What causes shortening of the penis and how to treat it?

Symptom Database

Shortening of the penis, also known as penis size reduction or reducing penis length, is a condition that can cause distress and concern for many men. While it may not be a commonly discussed topic, it is important to understand the potential causes and available treatment options for this condition. In some cases, penile shortening surgery may be considered as a solution. This article aims to provide valuable insights into what causes shortening of the penis and how it can be treated.

Understanding Shortening of the Penis

Shortening of the penis refers to a decrease in the length of the penis. This can occur gradually over time or suddenly, depending on the underlying cause. It is important to note that the average size of a flaccid penis varies among individuals, and there is no universally accepted standard for what is considered “normal” in terms of length.

Possible Causes of Shortening of the Penis

There are several potential causes of shortening of the penis, including:

  • Age: As men age, the tissues in the penis may naturally lose elasticity, leading to a decrease in length.
  • Peyronie’s disease: This condition involves the development of scar tissue in the penis, which can cause curvature and shortening.
  • Penile trauma: Injuries to the penis, such as fractures or severe bending, can result in shortening.
  • Underlying medical conditions: Certain medical conditions, such as diabetes or obesity, can contribute to penile shortening.
  • Hormonal imbalances: Fluctuations in hormone levels, particularly testosterone, can affect penile size.

Treatment Options for Shortening of the Penis

Non-Surgical Approaches

For individuals experiencing shortening of the penis, non-surgical approaches may be considered as a first-line treatment. These can include:

  • Penile exercises: Certain exercises, such as jelqing or stretching, may help improve blood flow and potentially increase penile length.
  • Medications: In some cases, medications may be prescribed to address underlying conditions contributing to penile shortening, such as Peyronie’s disease.
  • Lifestyle changes: Adopting a healthy lifestyle, including regular exercise, a balanced diet, and stress management, can have a positive impact on overall penile health.

Penile Shortening Surgery

In cases where non-surgical approaches do not yield satisfactory results, penile shortening surgery may be considered. This surgical procedure aims to remove excess tissue or correct abnormalities that contribute to penile shortening. It is important to note that penile shortening surgery is a significant decision and should be thoroughly discussed with a qualified healthcare professional.

Seeking Professional Advice

If you are concerned about shortening of the penis, it is essential to seek professional advice from a healthcare provider specializing in urology or sexual health. They can evaluate your specific situation, provide an accurate diagnosis, and recommend appropriate treatment options.


Shortening of the penis can be a distressing condition for many men, but it is important to remember that there are potential causes and treatment options available. Non-surgical approaches, such as penile exercises and lifestyle changes, may be effective for some individuals. However, in cases where these methods are not successful, penile shortening surgery may be considered. It is crucial to consult with a healthcare professional to determine the most suitable course of action. Remember, seeking professional advice is the first step towards addressing any concerns and finding a solution that works best for you.

Haroon Rashid, MD
Rate author
Urgent Care Center of Arlington, VA
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