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For millions of men worldwide, phimosis is a detrimentally life-affecting condition. While most cases of severely or dangerously tight foreskin are detected and treated during childhood or adolescence, phimosis can occur at any time during life. Despite being a surprisingly common condition, many choose to simply live with an uncomfortable or even painfully tight foreskin, unaware of how simple the condition can be to treat.

Traditionally, men living with phimosis have assumed that the only available option is surgical intervention. For a number of reasons, a sizeable proportion of phimosis patients would prefer not to undergo circumcision. Unfortunately, ignoring problems associated with tight foreskin can lead to any number of issues. 

Phimosis can make it difficult or impossible to maintain good hygiene, which can result in severe confidence issues and potentially dangerous infections. Depending on the tightness of the foreskin, phimosis can be anything from moderately uncomfortable to severely painful. It also has the potential to restrict blood flow, which can likewise cause complications.

When a case of phimosis is diagnosed, it is categorised within one of five grades of severity:

Grade 1: The foreskin is tight, but can still be retracted 100%

Grade 2: Glans exposure is around 90%, but full foreskin retraction is not possible

Grade 3: Around 50% glans exposure, making retraction and good hygiene difficult

Grade 4: 10% exposure of the glans, allowing for no effective washing

Grade 5: 0% exposure and impossible to see the glans

Severity varies significantly from one case to the next, but all cases of phimosis can have a negative impact on the lives of those affected.

Luckily, phimosis products and treatment methods have come a long way over recent years. Contrary to popular belief, there is no specific reason why circumcision should be the only available option for treating phimosis.  Irrespective of how severe the condition may be, the latest phimosis products combined with gentle foreskin stretching exercises may be all that’s needed to safely and effectively reverse the issue.

Importantly, phimosis treatment is now something that can take place at home, rather than in a medical environment. In conjunction with experienced male health specialists, innovative manufacturers are now producing safe and effective products for self-treatment. It’s always advisable to speak to a doctor and organise an examination, but where phimosis is diagnosed, it needn’t result in the need for surgical intervention.

Of course, there will always be circumstances where circumcision is recommended by a trained medical professional. In which case, it’s an option that should be fairly considered. However, the overwhelming majority of phimosis cases – all the way from Grade 1 right through to Grade 5 – can now be safely and painlessly treated with specialist phimosis products and gradual foreskin stretching exercises. As with all medical conditions, however, it’s important to identify and address the issue at the earliest possible stage.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding phimosis, book an appointment with your doctor at your earliest convenience.

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