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Sexually Transmitted Diseases/Bumps on penis the color of my skin? Still a virgin.



Hello. I'm 15 years old and still a virgin. Ever since I was 12 I've had these bumps on my penis the color of my skin. Some can be popped (witch i know your not suppose to) and have clear fluids in them. It first they started underneath the head on the right side, but eventually spread to the rest of the head. About a year ago it started to cover the shaft. I think more is beginning to spread over my penile head. Also I've had some appear on my fingers and hand (not the palm). Those ones haven't spread much at all. I've also had some appear on my elbows and knees after I fell off of my bike. It seemed to appear during the scar healing. The ones on my elbow have almost completely disappeared, but the ones on my knees are still visible, but have disappeared a bit. I haven't really been getting those bumps after I get a cut or something similar anymore.

I've held hands with my girlfriend, and for the past two years she hasn't seemed to get the bumps on her hand, so i'm not sure if it's contagious or not.

What I don't get is why these bumps keep on spreading so much on the penile area. I've done research for the past 3 years and I have seen very few people with similar bumps as me. I KNOW these aren't Pearly Penile Papules because they aren't just under the penis head only. Also, I very much doubt these are Fordyce spots because as far as I know, Fordyce spots only appear on the shaft and not on the penile head and hands. I've also heard about Tyson glands, but there are pretty much no pictures to reference that.

I've told my mother, and she took me to the Doctors. He said it was normal and that every man has it, but I highly, HIGHLY doubt this. I don't think other peoples spread this much.

I used to masturbate 1-3 times a day, but for the past year have been trying my best to tone it down just in case that's the problem. I've tried different soaps and different detergents.

ANY help as to what this is would be extremely appreciated.

Hello Shamar,
The bumps on the skin look very smooth, not elevated, and not inflammed or itchy. The two normal variations that it appears to be are "fordyce spots" which appear on the shaft, and possibly "lichen nitidus" on the head. They are not abnormal, even though not every man may have it for their entire lives. I cannot comment about whether almost everyone may occasionally have it at sometime during a man's life. The important thing to do is trust your doctor, and that you need not fear having a STD, since you haven't been sexually active yet!  

Remember also that you're in the middle of your teen years, and the male hormone testosterone is orchestrating many changes in your skin, mood, sweat, maturation, and a bunch of other things. This too shall pass! Just give it some time!

Masturbation is not harmful or associated with your situation, although if you use a lubricant, it may be irritating.  Change the cosmetics, soap, or lubricant that might cause this irritation.

Good luck, don't worry.

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Mark P. Behar


Almost any question or concern about gay men's health issues, sexually transmitted infections, abnormal Pap smears, anal cytology (anal "Pap smears"), etc. There is no such thing as “d/d free” or “clean” (free of infection), so why do so many of us deceive ourselves into thinking that some people are indeed totally free from a potentially infectious disease, like HIV, herpes, hepatitis, syphilis, chlamydia, warts, gonorrhea, etc., just because they say so? Clinical laboratory tests are not perfect, and having a “negative” or “nonreactive” test does not mean that a person is free from infection. Perhaps at the moment the test was taken, the person was uninfected; or, perhaps, the test wasn’t sensitive enough to detect presence of the infection. There is really no way that anyone can determine that they are truly “disease free,” and there are over a hundred of infectious conditions that can be spread without your knowing anything. Rather than trying to “pre-screen” or “serosort” a potential sex-mate with deceptive questions that are impossible to know by today’s technologies, a wiser option may be to consider everyone infected with something, and either use appropriate protective measures (“safer sex”), or accept the responsibility and consequences of possibly “catching” something from someone who’s hotter than expected (pun intended!). There is much research that supports the contention that an HIV positive person reliably taking HIV medications, and having an undetectable viral load, presents a lower risk for transmission of HIV than people who may think or say they are HIV negative, but are not. Food for thought!


Family Practice PA since 1981; Volunteer Clinician for Brady East STD (BESTD) Clinic, Milwaukee, since 1977; answered STD questions submitted to their web site. Professionally lectured at national and regional Physician Assistant and Nurse Practitioner conferences, and at national gay & lesbian health conferences on topics including HIV/AIDS, herpes, hepatitis, STDs, human papilloma virus (the cause of venereal warts), abnormal Pap smears, gay and lesbian health issues, among others.

Co-Founder, Lesbian, Bisexual, & Gay Physician Assistant Caucus of the American Academy of Physician Assistants, Inc.; American Academy of Physician Assistants; Wisconsin Academy of Physician Assistants; National Co-Chair (2012-16), National Association of Black and White Men Together: A Gay, Multiracial Organization for All People (NABWMT)

Journal of the American Academy of Physician Assistants (JAPA) Q Visions, Quarterly Newsletter of the NABWMT

Bachelor's of Arts, 1972 (University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, WI) Graduate Credits Experimental Psychology, 1972-75 (Tulane University, New Orleans, LA) Physician Assistant, Bachelor's of Science, 1981 (George Washington University, Washington, DC); Masters in Physician Assistant Studies, 2000 (University of Nebraska Medical Center, Omaha, NE)

Awards and Honors
Colposcopy Recognition Award (CRA), the American Association of Colposcopy and Cervical Pathology; Distinguished Fellow, Clinical Preceptor, American Academy of Physician Assistants; Fellow, Wisconsin Academy of Physician Assistants

Past/Present Clients
Brady East STD Clinic, Milwaukee, WI Milwaukee Health Services, Inc. (Martin Luther King Heritage Health Center), Dept. of Family Medicine and Early Intervention Program for HIV Infected Persons

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