Penis shrinkage: Here's why your manhood keeps reducing and what to do

Penis shrinkage is a decrease in penis size.


Sometimes, the shrinkage is permanent, and other times, it is the result of a treatable condition or due to lifestyle habits.

Penis size varies amongst men, and in some cases, considerably. A study showsTrusted Source that neither race nor ethnicity has anything to do with penis size.

While many men may think they have above average size penises, most fall into the range experts consider the normal size.

What are the causes of penis shrinkage?

Penis shrinkage is widespread as men age, but there are many other reasons why a penis may shrink:

  • Ageing

As men age, fatty deposits build up in the arteries causing reduced blood flow to the penis. This results in the muscle cells in the erectile tubes inside the penis becoming weaker. The erectile tubes produce erections when they are engorged with blood, so less blood flow means smaller or fewer firm erections.

  • Weight gain

The impact of weight gain, particularly around their stomachs, is a genuine concern for many men as they age.

Although a man’s penis may appear smaller with weight gain, it has not shrunk. The reason it looks smaller is that the penis is attached to the abdominal wall, and when the belly expands, it pulls the penis inward. If a man loses weight, his penis will regain its usual shape and size.

  • Peyronie’s disease

In Peyronie’s disease, fibrous scar tissue develops inside the penis causing it to become curved during erection. Most of the time, a curved erection is not a reason for concern, but for some men, the bend might be significant or painful.

Peyronie’s can cause a reduction in the length and circumference of a man’s penis. Sometimes, Peyronie’s goes away on its own; most of the time, however, it will either stay the same or get worse. Doctors will only consider treatment if the bend is painful or prevents sexual intercourse. Surgery can be done to remove scar tissue causing shrinkage, bending, or pain.

  • Smoking

Chemicals from cigarette smoking can injure the blood vessels in the penis, preventing the penis from filling with blood and stretching. Regardless of the stimuli and the effect on the brain, if the blood vessels are damaged, the penis will not achieve an erection.

Smoking is also associated with erectile dysfunction (ED), according to a 2017 study reported in the BJU InternationalTrusted Source. ED affects a man’s ability to maintain an erection, and smoking may prevent erections.

Treatment options

  • Most causes of penis shrinkage, such as smoking and weight gain, can be addressed by making lifestyle changes. If medications are causing the penis to shrink, a medication adjustment can reverse the shrinkage.
  • Treatment for Peyronie’s disease focuses on removing scar tissue from inside the penis, either with medication, surgery, or ultrasound technology. Penis shrinkage is irreversible but repairing the curvature can help improve sexual function and reduce pain.

When to see a doctor

Most of the time, penis shrinkage is related to age, medication, or lifestyle habits, such as smoking or weight gain, and rarely requires treatment. Adopting more healthful lifestyle habits or changing medication can often reverse shrinkage and reduce other sexual problems.

Any man who is experiencing penis shrinkage, pain, or other sexual problems, or has concerns about cancer, should talk to their doctor. A doctor, or urologist, can answer questions, reassure male patients, and offer testing and treatment if necessary.


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