Broken penis? (aka How does a man break his penis?)

Thanks to a recent episode of Grey’s Anatomy, more men are wondering about penile fracture (i.e., the possibility of breaking one’s penis) and whether it’s possible to have a “broken penis”. Though I’m sure many men would hope this condition was just an idea invented by TV producers, in fact it is definitely possible to injure one’s penis.

When a man’s penis is erect, it becomes easier to break or injure than when it is soft (flaccid). Often penis injuries (penis breaks) occur during sex. What happens is this: a man may be having vigorous sex with his partner, in pretty much any position (such as missionary, woman on top, rear entry, etc – though woman on top seems to be a common one for this injury) and then as he’s thrusting in and out, at one point his penis may come all the way out of his partner and then instead of going back into his partner’s vagina or anus, it might instead hit hard against the outside of his partner’s body. If it does this, then the impact can cause the ligaments inside the penis to break. (Since there are no bones inside the penis, it’s not a break as in a broken bone.) Sometimes men or their partner will recall hearing a popping sound at the time of impact.

Men: if this ever happens to you, please check in with a healthcare provider immediately. Penile injuries are more easily treated when they are treated soon after the “break” as, if left untreated, scar tissue can develop which can make erections shorter, curved or painful. Fortunately, treatment is often effective and most men recover and retain full, wonderful function of their treasured penis. 

I’ve previously written about similar issues on our Kinsey Confidential web site, which you can read here.

Learn more about penis breaks here.

About Dr. Debby Herbenick

Dr. Debby Herbenick

Dr. Debby Herbenick is a sex researcher at Indiana University, sexual health educator at The Kinsey Institute, columnist, and author of five books about sex and love. Learn more about her work at www.sexualhealth.indiana.edu.

  • Tim Hughes

    It hurt just to read this. Yeeow!

  • Tim Hughes

    It hurt just to read this. Yeeow!

  • http://www.gigantiskpenis.info större penis & större snopp

    As Tim stated below, it hurts just to read this…