Sexually Transmitted Diseases/Pimple bump on shaft


Second angle
Second angle  
QUESTION: Hello Mr. Brice,

I have had this small raised bump on my shaft. It has a hair follicle growing out of the middle of it. It is raised and brownish.  I haven't had sex since Dec. 2013. It is on the lower shaft. I am fairly hairly and get ingrown hairs but I wanted to make sure it wasn't a wart or anything bad.

ANSWER: Ralphy,

I can see oodles of Fordyce's spots all over your testicles and shaft and that one is no different. Fordyce's is an inherited skin condition and is completely harmless. They are basically whiteheads or pimples without with the "white!" Please do NOT pop these as they lead to open wounds which can scar and become infected. Although they do contain trapped sebum (oil) they do eventually subside and heal themselves. However, they can also come back, so there is no treatment or cure for these. The good news is you tend to grow out of them the older you get. At 32, I get them less than I did when I was in my teens. If you find that you want some form of intervention then you can seek the help of a dermatologist who can treat them with minor surgery. However, they can come back.



---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Why is it way bigger?
So it is not a std, and can fordyce have a full hair growing out of it.

ANSWER: Ralphy,

No, Fordyce's is not an STI and yes, Fordyce's can be located with hair follicles, but typically they grow in areas where sometimes their are no follicles like your glans, around your mouth, and your shaft. The size is relative to the sebaceous gland below it, so a sebaceous gland on your glans will be much smaller than one at the top of your shaft. The ones I've seen on that area have always been pretty big, so yours doesn't surprise me at all.

Best wishes,


---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Thanks. Dr. Brice,

How sure are you of this being a gland and not an std. antoher dermatolgist said it was a milia or cyst? Thoughts. These are my last questions. Should i cancel my doctors appt about it?


I'm not a physician, I'm a health educator and EMT :D And a Fordyce's spot IS a sebaceous cyst. The medical definition of a cyst is a "closed sac" in which a group of cells cluster to form some hollow space and in this case the hollow space is filled with fluid. We're both right and if you want to spend the extra money to hear your doctor say exactly what I've told you then you can, but I'm telling you for free :) Oh btw a "milia" is a classification of Fordyce's, but your dermatologist was a dummy because a milia IS A type of cyst.....what the heck was he talking about???? o.O

Best wishes,


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John Brice


Educated and certified in STI information, HIV and AIDS, and trained in comprehensive sex education for teens and young adults. Providing counseling in sexuality, sexual interests, and sexual orientations, pregnancy prevention, safer sex initiatives, and teaching health education seminars to adults ages 18-65 for the past 3 years. Serve underserved clients in homeless shelters, workplace readiness programs, and detention centers. Three term AmeriCorps domestic service volunteer and Peace Corps nominee for Health Service to Lesotho and Rwanda. Providing services to the GLBTQIA populations of which I am a member.


3 years as a volunteer Emergency Medical Technician (Advanced) for 3 years and comprehensive sex educator for 3 years and parenting educator for 3 years. *North Carolina State Certified Emergency Medical Technician, #P083512 *Certified Health Education Specialist, #22589

*American Public Health Association *National Commission on Health Education Credentialing

American Public Health Association, Student Assembly, Quarterly Newsletter 2012-2014

*Doctor of Education (candidate), K-12 Teacher Leadership; Capella University *Master of Public Health, Social and Behavioral Sciences; Capella University *Master of Education, Curriculum and Instruction; Concordia University-Portland *Bachelor of Arts, Psychology and English; East Carolina University

Awards and Honors
Graduated with Distinction from Capella University AllExperts, Top Experts of 2014 (One and Multiple Categories)

Past/Present Clients
*Over 180 clients, lasting 30 sessions, in 5 locations during Florida service. *Over 150 clients, lasting 18 sessions, in 2 locations during South Carolina service.

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