Penile Cancer: Symptoms, Signs and Causes

Penile cancer commonly presents with symptoms like sores, growths, changes in color and texture of the penile skin, bleeding, unusual discharge, and pain. Most of these symptoms are easily observable, making early detection possible.

Smoking, HPV infection, HIV/AIDS, etc., are identified as risk factors or possible causes of penile cancer in men. It is necessary to be aware of different risk factors to reduce the overall risk of penile cancer.

What are the Penile Cancer Symptoms and Signs?

Some patients may not experience any signs of penile cancer, while others will exhibit early symptoms. Unlike the symptoms of other cancers, penile cancer symptoms often don’t go unnoticed as they are easily visible to the naked eye.

Learning about the different signs and symptoms of penile cancer can lead to early detection and timely intervention.

What are the Causes of Penile Cancer?

The exact cause of penile cancer is yet to be identified. However, several lifestyle-based and non-lifestyle-related factors have been identified as risk factors or possible causes of penile cancer. The following are some of the possible penile cancer causes or risk factors:

When to See an Oncologist

If symptoms like the presence of growths and lumps on the penile surface, sores, and changes in the appearance, color, and texture of the penile skin are observed persistently, it is important to consult a specialist. Early diagnosis and timely treatment are important for better clinical outcomes.


It is important to be aware of the different signs of penile cancer and understand the risk factors that are associated with it to put oneself a step ahead of penile cancer. If any symptom is experienced for more than 2-4 weeks, it is important to see a specialist for a proper evaluation, as it supports early detection and timely treatment of penile cancer.

Frequently Asked Questions

Penile carcinoma may not cause any symptoms in its early stages. However, some individuals may experience signs of penile cancer, such as changes in the texture and appearance of the penile skin, the presence of lumps or sores, unusual discharge, and bleeding. It is important to not ignore these symptoms and promptly see a doctor, especially if they are persistent.

The rate at which cancer spreads depends on the type, grade, and stage. Certain types of penile tumors have a faster growth rate compared to others. Also, a high-grade tumor refers to an aggressive type of cancer that spreads more readily than a low-grade tumor. Lastly, the higher the stage of cancer, the greater its potential to spread.

The aggressiveness of penile carcinoma depends on its type and grade. Certain types of penile cancer are relatively more aggressive than others and will demand a vigilant treatment approach.

Yes, in the early stages, a penile tumor may not exhibit any symptoms, and patients may not know.

Being aware of the different penile cancer early symptoms and looking for them during regular penile self-examinations can help in early detection and timely treatment.

Those with this cancer type may have discoloration of the penile skin, usually in the form of red or bluish-brown patches. However, not all patients with penile cancer may experience this symptom, and its appearance can vary from one patient to another.

Stage 0 penile carcinoma is characterized by the presence of precancerous lesions in the form of changes in the appearance and texture of the penile skin.

Yes, in some cases, a penile cancer lump on the shaft or other parts of the penis may be observed. It is important not to ignore any abnormalities and to see a specialist for a prompt evaluation.

The presence of an abnormal growth or bump on the tip or foreskin is often the first sign of penile cancer. Other signs of penile cancer include a rash, discoloration, unusual discharge, and bleeding. That said, other penile conditions may also cause these symptoms. Therefore, it is important to see a specialist for a proper evaluation.