What is PPP?
Pearly Penile Papules (aka hirsuties papillaris genitalis or hirsuties coronae glandis) are small white coloured skin tags or domes that form around the penis gland. They appear in rows around the rim of the penis head and may also appear on either side of the frenulum.
Pearly penile papules are considered a "normal" human variant. This means they are a normal growth similar to a skin tag or mole. Pearly penile papules are totally harmless and are not contagious in any way. It is not a sexually transmitted disease (STD), therefore, you could not have been "infected" by sexual contact nor is there a risk of passing pearly penile papules onto your sexual partner.
On appearance, they can sometimes be mistaken for a sexually transmitted disease, such as genital warts. The skin tags should not be open wounds, should not weep, and should not itch or cause any irritation. If they do please seek your doctors advice as they may not be pearly penile papules.
Other types of "normal" human variants can also be confused for pearly penile papules. If you have pimple like structures either singularly or in clusters on the shaft of the penis or on the scrotum then this is not pearly penile papules. These are commonly known as 'Fordyce Spots' or 'Sebaceous Prominence.' Find out more information about Fordyce Spots here.
If you are unsure or need reassurance you should consult your doctor for guidance.
The cause or reason pearly penile papules appear is unknown. There is most likely a genetic factor involved, but why pearly penile papules get expressed in one individual and not another is again unknown. There is a belief that pearly penile papules may be swollen or blocked sweat glans or pores, or glands that are exaggerated. Pearly penile papules are in no way related to sexual activity or bad hygiene.
A study by Dean (2000) indicates "Pearly penile papules usually begin to appear between the ages of 20 and 40 years." However, various reports from teenagers in forums, reports through my website, and from my own history, indicate they can, and I believe more frequently, start to appear during teenage years (12-16 age range).
A review of studies by Brown (2001) purports: "the incidence of pearly penile papules reportedly ranges from 8-48%. Several reports suggest an increased incidence in uncircumcised versus circumcised men (22% vs. 12%, respectively). One study found a greater incidence in black versus white men, in those circumcised (21% vs. 7%, respectively) and uncircumcised (44% vs. 33%, respectively)"
Another study by Rehbein (1977) studied 840 men aged 10-66 years and found an overall incidence of pearly penile papules of 30.1% in this group. Black men in the study demonstrated a rate of pearly penile papules of 32.7% (44% in uncircumcised, 20.8% in circumcised black males). White men in the study demonstrated a rate of 13.9% (33.3% in uncircumcised, 7.1% in circumcised white males).
Through running this site, I have been able to communicate with a large section of guys with pearly penile papules. Because of this, I can confirm the incidence of pearly penile papules appears to be higher in uncircumcised men than in circumcised men. Very few men I have corresponded with (only one comes to mind) who was circumcised at birth prior to the development of his pearly penile papules.
Being a gay male, I have seen my share of penises in my life. With the high incidence rates indicated in the above study, I would have expected to encounter many more guys with pearly penile papules, however, I have only ever encountered three other guys with pearly penile papules. You would also expect to see incidence of pearly penile papules in professional porn, and in porn pictures posted by amateurs. This is not the case. So why does the high incidence in these studies not translate to real life experiences? A number of reasons can be theorised. Guys with pearly penile papules may just be hiding out, or these studies provided the opportunity for guys with pearly penile papules to find out more information about their condition.
Based on these studies, it is also easy to conclude that getting circumcised will result in the reduction of pearly penile papules. While these studies show a higher incidence of pearly penile papules in uncircumcised men; these same studies show that pearly penile papules still develop in circumcised men.
If you already have pearly penile papules, getting circumcised will not cause them to suddenly drop off. While it may reduce the size and general appearance of pearly penile papules due to a reduction of moisture in the tissues, the papules will be much more visible and pronounced without a foreskin to hide them from view. I have received reports from members who were circumcised soon after birth yet still develop pearly penile papules. This potentially shows some sort of genetic influence rather than just environment.
Once pearly penile papules start to appear it may take up to 4 years for them to completely come to the surface. When this period of growth ends they do not seem to grow any more and unfortunately do not subside or disappear by themselves. There have been reports of them diminishing (but not disappearing) with age, however the degree that they diminish is unclear. Reports from guys in the 40 - 60 age range indicate that pearly penile papules will remain throughout your life unless treatment is sought.
The only effective method of removal of pearly penile papules is by laser treatment. There is no known topical or oral medication to treat pearly penile papules, this includes wart removal products (please read the dangers of wart removal products on pearly penile papules here).
There have been many home remedies touted over the Internet, many I have tried myself over the 10+ years I had pearly penile papules. Unfortunately, there is no home remedy available to remove pearly penile papules. Please read my page on Home Remedies and Treatments for more information.
Guys with pearly penile papules are also being targeted by affiliate marketing schemes that have blatantly copied my site content and research into pearly penile papules. Please see links here for more insight into this affiliate marketing system targeting so called “embarrassing” conditions. Pearly penile papules is at the top of their list. See my homepage for more information.
What this website provides
This website provides only factual information. All the information is based on documented case studies by the medical profession and my own experience of growing up with pearly penile papules and finally getting treatment at the age of 26 years old. Over the years of running this site I have also incorporated the experience of the many members who have used the knowledge I provided to go through treatment and have come back to share their own experience. This collective sharing of experience has made NoMorePapules.com the most comprehensive site on the internet about pearly penile papules and its treatment.
Before I went through with treatment, I had many questions that, for many years, stopped me getting treatment.
Will the procedure hurt?
Will there be any scarring?
Will the skin lose its elasticity?
What are the risks?
Will I lose sensitivity?
Will I still be able to enjoy sex?
Will the whole process be painful. Period?
NoMorepapules.com dispels all these myths and answers these questions and more.
Why a members section? My experience is a personal one. I go into a lot of effort to open my experience to the world. As such, I wanted to safeguard my experience as much as possible (with the surge of affiliate marketing websites targeting guys with pearly penile papules, this decision has proven wise). Another reason was to create a domain for guys to discuss pearly penile papules without being bombarded with false and confusing information as is most of the forums on the internet.
Because of this, the members section has fostered quality information about pearly penile papules removal. As an example: Knowledge of the effectiveness of different types of lasers in relation to pearly penile papules removal has grown due to the sharing of members experience. Also, the List of Doctors that now offer CO2 removal of pearly penile papules has grown from a humble list of one to a more modest list of nearly 30 doctors in countries including: Australia, USA, Canada, England, Israel, Netherlands, Portugal, Thailand, and New Zealand.
In one word, this site gives you the CONFIDENCE to get treatment knowing that many guys have walked the path before you, have encountered the same feelings and questions, and have provided the answers you seek. With the information now available getting treatment for your pearly penile papules is no longer a leap but a confident step.