Sexually Transmitted Diseases/tiny bump on penis


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I have a tiny (1mm or smaller) pointy, smooth bump on my penis that I'm concerned about, specifically warts. I have seen these occasionally, especially when skin is stretched, and they seem to come and go, but this one seems bigger. A couple months ago I went to dermatologist for concern about a rough skin patch in the same spot of my penis. He called it keratosis, said nothing to worry about, but froze it with liquid nitrogen. Said it wasn't a wart. Now that the skin has healed from the cryo, it does look a bit different in the area, a bit smoother, but not like the rest of my penis. and this bump remains. It doesn't  look like a wart to me either, but I'm concerned about what it is. It's really only easily visible when the skin is stretched. please see pictures.

I was with a woman within the last year who told me that 11 years prior, she had HPV. she gave me oral sex, and hand jobs, and I know she had some of her own vaginal fluids on her hand when she touched me. I  put my penis in her, WITH protection, once or twice. Ive read extensively that this is not how hpv is passed. she also knows that the strain she had didnt cause warts.  she had an abnormal pap, had some cells removed from her cervix, and clean paps for the next 10 years. she never had a wart, nor has her current partner after many years of unprotected sex.  

what do you think this is?

Hello Robert,
Bumps that "come and go" are not warts, which "come but DON'T GO" unless medically treated.  Cryo is usually a very effective treatment for warts, and you already saw an expert-- a dermatologist! The dermatologist can tell you the actual name of the tiny bump, as that is his/her specialty. I can tell you what it is NOT (as did the dermatologist!)-- it is NOT a wart. It is a normal variation of the skin, and if you continue to worry about such things, than perhaps a therapist should be consulted to help you overcome this anxiety.

Good luck!

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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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