Treating pearly penile papules in teenage boys

Treating pearly penile papules in teenage boys
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pearly penile papules in teenage boysPearly penile papules (PPPs) can develop at any age, including teenage boys. PPPs are not dangerous and are not infectious, but the wearer of this string of pearls may not appreciate these additions.

Dear Teenage Boys,

Quick facts on pearly  penile papules:

  • PPPs are not contagious (you did not catch them off someone else)
  • PPPs will probably be with you for life (but can disappear in some men later on)
  • You must have your parents consent to have PPP’s removed if you are under 18
  • You may learn to love your PPPs or at least make peace with them
  • If you hate them, we can get rid of them
  • PPPs are vapourised in our clinic by Dr Michael Rich at ENRICH Clinic
  • Once vapourised, PPPs do not return
  • You aren’t losing anything functional if you want to have your PPPs vapourised

Why do PPPs grow if they are useless?

Researchers think PPPs are a remnant from when we were a different sort of creature and had what’s known as ‘penile spines’. Humans haven’t used penile spines in quite some time, but some animals still use them during mating.

We have developed other methods of trying to get people to have sex with us, so the penile spines fell by the wayside. Thank you, nature.

Like many parts of our bodies, penile spines are now a genetic remnant that appears in some guys and not in others. We don’t know why.

What is the PPP vapourising procedure like?

It might sound scary to have a laser beam near your penis and apprehension is complelety normal. Dr Rich, however, is a very experienced pearly penile papule removalist, having performed this procedure hundreds of times.

The procedure goes a little something like this:

  1. You make an appointment to see Dr Rich.
  2. He’ll ask you to drop drawers so he can take a look and determine if you do, in fact, have PPPs (and not something else like a sexually transmitted infection).
  3. If the PPPs are confirmed, Dr Rich can set up your appointment(s) to vapourise the bumps with one of ENRICH Clinic’s state-of-the-art lasers.
  4. At your appointment, the head of your penis is numbed with numbing cream for about 45 minutes, so you don’t feel anything.
  5. Dr. Rich will gently and carefully aim the laser beam and perform the treatment.
  6. Once the PPPs are all treated, yes, your penis will be a little tender.
  7. Usually, only one treatment is required; however, on rare occasions, a repeat treatment may be required to ensure all the papules are gone.
  8. You’ll be sent home with aftercare instructions and can expect your penis to take up to 7-14 days to heal fully. That means being gentle with it as the small wounds heal and scab over. So, err, no touching…

Recovery from PPP removal

The care instructions are important because the procedure is performed on a very delicate area of the body. Treat the small wounds like you would any other wound: keep it clean and dry, don’t pick it up, don’t touch it with dirty hands, and use any products as instructed by Dr Rich.

Wash only with warm water in the shower, and pat dry gently (don’t rub).

The end of the penis, where the urethra exits, is not affected by PPP removal, so urinating won’t be any different except for where you hold yourself to go. You’ll soon find out what you can and can’t do, so be gentle when going to the bathroom.

Without being too dramatic, you’re going to have trouble doing anything much more than going to the toilet until the skin heals. Luckily genital skin heals quite quickly, so your penis won’t be out of action for long. You can expect a recovery within days but we cannot stress enough to stick to your post-treatment care regime.

You can lubricate the healing skin with a little Vaseline or Stratamed a few times per day. The ointment helps the skin stay supple and flexible as you heal, lubricating the penis against itself (foreskin) and the fabric of underwear.

You can expect the penis to be red and a little swollen after treatments, but this usually dissipate as healing commences.

Because we use an anaesthetic cream, there is no need for more invasive anaesthetics, such as injections that work to block nerves. The treatment is performed on the outer skin only, so only the outer skin requires numbing.

We can remove PPPs on any skin tone without resulting in hyper- or hypopigmentation. Healing is quick and usually without incident. Antibiotics may be prescribed to prevent infection, but a local cream or just ointment may be preferable depending on the patient.

Infection is not anticipated and is rare, but it’s super important to be diligent with hygiene and your after-care. We cannot stress how gentle and diligent you need to be with this very intimate area.

We do love our lasers and believe they are the most effective way to remove PPPs. Scientific research backs this up – see for yourself!


We can help pearly penile papules disappear.
Contact us for an appointment.


Please Note:

*With all surgeries or procedures, there are risks. Consult your physician (GP) before undertaking any surgical or cosmetic procedure. Please read the consent forms carefully and be informed about every aspect of your treatment. Surgeries such as liposuction have a mandatory seven-day cooling-off period to give patients adequate time to be sure of their surgery choice. Results may also vary from person to person due to many factors, including the individual’s genetics, diet and exercise. Before and after photos are only relevant to the patient in the photo and do not necessarily reflect the results other patients may experience. Ask questions. Our team of dermatologists, doctors and nurses are here to help you with any of your queries. This page is not advice and is intended to be informational only. We endeavour to keep all our information up to date; however, this site is intended as a guide and not a definitive information portal or in any way constitutes medical advice.

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