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What causes Peyronie's disease?

Although the exact cause of Peyronie’s disease is not known, current scientific research indicates that an exaggerated healing process in the body occurs after trauma to the penis, which may happen during intercourse. It is important to note that the vast majority of patients will not recall a specific traumatic intercourse event and that the “trauma” may not be very different from what is normally experienced.
 
In Peyronie’s disease, this exaggerated response leads to tunical (the lining of the penis) plaque formation. As a result of this plaque (not the same as blood vessel or heart plaques), the penis tends to be deformed or curved when erect. The plaque may also affect the quality of erections, so a person suffering from Peyronie’s disease may experience both poor erections and a deformed or curved penis.
 
Pain in the plaque area is not always a symptom of Peyronie’s disease, but it certainly can be an additional burden for many men. When pain is observed, it is usually in the first 12-18 months, when the pathology is thought to be in its active phase (when the plaque may be going through changes that can affect the shape of the penis). In some cases, the degree of curvature is such that intercourse may be impossible due to discomfort for the patient or his partner.
There is no consensus on the cause(s) of Peyronie's disease in medicine.  It is thought to be multifactorial, and the leading hypothesis is that there is micro-injury to the erectile bodies of the penis with subsequent healing, fibrosis and inflammation associated with the attempt to heal.  Recurrent micro-injuries lead to a cycle of repeated tissue healing/injury that can lead to scarring, venous leak causing ED and ultimately penile curvature. 

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.