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What causes darkening of skin around the urethra?

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Posted on Thu, 31 Jul 2014
Question: Hi, I noticed a few months ago that the color of the skin around the urethra have become darker, more brownish. Since then, there are no more changes to the shape, only some times it looks a bit more irritated, however after a while it goes back to just being darker than the rest of the skin in this area. I had blood and urine tests and both came back clear. I don't have any other symptoms. I don't have unprotected sex too.
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Answered by Dr. Sanjay Kumar Kanodia (51 minutes later)
Brief Answer:
Post inflammatory hyper-pigmentation; No STD

Detailed Answer:
Hello,

Welcome and thanks for posting your query to the forum.

I can understand your concern for darker color around urethra.

Let me first reassure you that it is normal natural phenomenon of the skin and there is nothing abnormal in the same.

To tell you simply, the darkness is due to the activity of melanocytes in the skin. These melanocytes are the cells which regularly produces color/pigment known as melanin in the skin.

These melanocytes are superficially present in the upper skin known as epidermis. This is a tendency in ourselves to get higher activity of these mealnocytes after any minor to major irritation or injury or contact allergy. The aforesaid areas are prone for friction and that causes over production of melanin in the skin. This pigmentation is known as "Post inflammatory hyper-pigmentation" or PIH.

There is no role of any sexually transmitted infection in the same and therefore there is nothing to be worried about the same and no treatment is required.

Just relax about the darker pigmentation and is totally normal natural process.

I hope these informations will relax you. I will be glad to reply any further queries.

With regards,

Dr Sanjay Kumar Kanodia
MD (Dermatology & Sexually transmitted diseases)
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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Follow up: Dr. Sanjay Kumar Kanodia (2 hours later)
XXXXXXX Dr Kanodia,

Thank you for your prompt reply.

It's definitely a relief to read all the information you provided.
I did a little research online and they say that applying: retinol cream, or Man1 Man Oil in the affected area, could possibly help. Do you think I should try them?
doctor
Answered by Dr. Sanjay Kumar Kanodia (6 hours later)
Brief Answer:
Retinol can cause strong irritation. Do not try.

Detailed Answer:
Hello young fellow,

Welcome again to the forum and thanks for your follow up.

The skin over the penile area is one of the thinnest in the body and that too over the glans and near the urethra one of the most sensitive one.

Retinol or any other thing or any chemical agents have irritation potential and can cause strong irritation and further complications.

I suggest you to not to try any kind of medication for the simple natural thing. It is a normal physiological process and therefore at some point you may feel bit darkness and at other point of time there can be bit lighter appearance of the skin too.

So do not worry about this simple condition and just relax.

I hope these information's will help you. If you have further queries I will be happy to help or if not then can close the query and rate the answer.

For any future guidance regarding skin conditions you can ask me directly at:

bit.ly/drsanjaykanodia

"Wish you good health"

Regards,
Dr Sanjay Kumar Kanodia
MD (Dermatology)
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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Dr. Sanjay Kumar Kanodia

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Practicing since :2002

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What causes darkening of skin around the urethra?

Brief Answer: Post inflammatory hyper-pigmentation; No STD Detailed Answer: Hello, Welcome and thanks for posting your query to the forum. I can understand your concern for darker color around urethra. Let me first reassure you that it is normal natural phenomenon of the skin and there is nothing abnormal in the same. To tell you simply, the darkness is due to the activity of melanocytes in the skin. These melanocytes are the cells which regularly produces color/pigment known as melanin in the skin. These melanocytes are superficially present in the upper skin known as epidermis. This is a tendency in ourselves to get higher activity of these mealnocytes after any minor to major irritation or injury or contact allergy. The aforesaid areas are prone for friction and that causes over production of melanin in the skin. This pigmentation is known as "Post inflammatory hyper-pigmentation" or PIH. There is no role of any sexually transmitted infection in the same and therefore there is nothing to be worried about the same and no treatment is required. Just relax about the darker pigmentation and is totally normal natural process. I hope these informations will relax you. I will be glad to reply any further queries. With regards, Dr Sanjay Kumar Kanodia MD (Dermatology & Sexually transmitted diseases)