Penile & Testicular Health

Male sexual anatomy (internal, side view)

Discharges

Uncircumcised (uncut) penises may accumulate a cheesy white substance under the foreskin, known as smegma. This is normal, and comes from small glands in the surface of the head of the penis. Make sure to wash under the foreskin each time you bathe to remove any trapped bacteria or smegma from underneath the foreskin.  Be aware that some soaps may irritate the skin. If this is the case, try a soap-free body wash.

Clear or whitish fluid may drip from the penis when sexually excited (‘pre-cum’).

Ejaculate fluid (cum) contains sperm produced in the testes, seminal fluid produced in glands near the prostate, and prostatic fluid produced in the prostate. Ejaculate passes through the urethra during ejaculation.

Any other discharge from the penis could be a symptom of an infection. If you are experiencing unusual discharge, it is recommended that you seek medical advice.

Testicular Self-Examination

Testicular examination should be performed once a month. Most lumps are not cancer, but any lump should be immediately checked by a doctor or health professional.

Testicular self-examination is best performed after a warm shower or bath, as the skin covering the testicle will be more relaxed. You are checking for any change from the normal, especially a lump on the front or side of the testicle, or any swelling or hardening. Your testes should feel firm and the skin on the testes should feel smooth.

How to conduct a self-examination of your testes

  • Examine each testicle separately.
  • Roll the testicle between two fingers (index and middle fingers) and thumb.
  • A small firm area will be felt at the back of the testicle. This is a normal part of the testicle called the epididymis. Check for any swelling in this area.
  • Repeat with the other testicle.
  • Support the testicles in the palm of the hand and note the size and weight of the testicle. It is common for one to be larger than the other.
  • Swelling of the testicles or groin should be checked by standing in front of a mirror.
  • If you noticed any change in your testes or hard lumps, you should visit your doctor.

Taping, Strapping and Tucking

If you are taping, strapping or tucking you could create a warm, moist area leading to skin disorders, chafing and dermatitis. Removing tape roughly could result in damaged or broken skin. If you get someone else’s body fluids on you, cuts, scrapes and skin disorders can increase the risk of a virus penetrating your skin. If you have recently undergone surgery involving any areas of your body that may be exposed to bodily fluids during sex, be sure to protect the area until your skin has completely healed.