While it is quite normal for the penis to swell with blood during sexual arousal to form an erection, the soft tissues in the structure of the penis can become swollen and painful due to injury.
The skin, foreskin, and scrotum have very sensitive skin that can become swollen and painful after an injury.
Injuries to the penis can include injury during sexual intercourse, scratches and bites, knocks, burns, or internal injury from objects inserted into the urethra. Sometimes contact with creams and lotions can cause inflammation and painful swelling.
A fractured penis can be caused by too much force on the penis during sexual intercourse or masturbation. It can cause bruising and swelling. If you have a fractured penis, you need urgent surgery.
Looking after yourself
If you have penis swelling or pain, here’s how you can look after yourself.
- Avoid sexual intercourse and masturbation until the pain settles.
- If you are in pain, get advice on medicines you can take.
- An ice pack may relieve swelling but should not be placed directly against the skin. Try wrapping a bag of frozen peas in a cloth, such as a clean tea towel, and mould this around the swollen area.
- Wear close-fitting underpants to give support to the painful area.
Blood at the tip of the penis or in the urine is a sign of a serious injury. If you are concerned about penis swelling or pain, see your doctor.
Not sure what to do next?
If you are still concerned about your penis swelling or pain, check your symptoms with healthdirect’s online Symptom Checker to get advice on when to seek medical attention.
The Symptom Checker guides you to the next appropriate healthcare steps, whether it’s self-care, talking to a health professional, going to a hospital or calling triple zero (000).
Learn more here about the development and quality assurance of healthdirect content.
Last reviewed: October 2017