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Penile injury may indicate cancer: ‘Early diagnosis is key to avoid amputation’

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  • Giulia Granchi
  • From BBC News Brazil to Sao Paulo

The health worker holds an anatomical model of the male reproductive system

Credit, Getty Images

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Penile cancer can manifest as sores of different appearances. Therefore, the recommendation is that any injury to the penis should be evaluated by a specialist.

About eight years ago, Carlos noticed that small warts had appeared on the tip of his penis. Without imagining that it could be cancer, the symptoms that appeared a few days later scared the paulistano, then 64 years old.

Before long, the lesions swelled and began to cause severe pain and burning and interfere with his work as a truck driver. With the constant discomfort, sleeping for hours at a stretch or concentrating on usual routine activities became impossible.

He made an appointment with a doctor he found at a popular private health care network. The biopsy performed by the professional indicated that Carlos suffered from squamous papilloma, a tumor that has been linked to HPV (human papilloma virus) infection.

The prescribed treatment consisted of antibiotics and an ointment made in a compounding pharmacy. It was not enough. Between a new biopsy, the change of medication and the cauterization of the wounds, the years passed. “Nothing helped solve the problem once and for all, so I decided to look for another hospital,” Carlos recalls.

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