Penile discharge is one of the more obvious symptoms of common STDs. Still, it’s important to recognize the causes and risks associated with unexpected discharge from the genitals because the associated symptoms and causes of penile discharge are numerous.
Normal vs Abnormal Discharge from the Penis
Normal discharge like urine, ejaculate, and pre-ejaculate are not symptomatic of a medical condition. Abnormal discharge can occur in a number of different ways. It may be white, clear, greenish, or yellow. It may have a thick consistency, or it may be watery. It may or may not have a distinct odor. Regardless, should you experience unexplained discharge from the penis, it’s a strong sign that you may have an STD. (Note that abnormal discharge is not simply semen or ejaculate that has changed color –– though the discharge may appear similar to ejaculate in appearance or consistency.)
Painful Discharge & Blood During Urination
Penile discharge as a result of STDs may or may not be painful. Experiencing discharge dripping from the penis typically is, though, and such a symptom is regularly linked to gonorrhea. However, STD-related discharge rarely contains blood. If you notice blood in your urine, it could indicate the presence of a kidney stone, a urinary tract infection, or benign tumors.
What STDs Cause Male Discharge?
There are three STDs that typically lead to penile discharge: chlamydia, gonorrhea, and trichomoniasis. If you experience penile discharge, pain, or itching during urination, genital pain before, during, or after ejaculation, or if you experience any of the above along with other symptoms of STDs, then it’s likely you have an STD. Fortunately, chlamydia, gonorrhea, and trichomoniasis are all curable! However, it’s important to remember that just because an STD is treatable, it doesn’t mean it’s harmless. Left alone, these STDs can lead to further health complications –– including infertility. Symptoms of STDs may stop after a while; don’t be fooled, though. STDs can remain dormant in your system for years. The only way to ensure your well-being is to get tested and treated by a medical professional.
Non-STD Causes of Male Discharge
As mentioned above, a urinary tract infection is a non-STD related condition that causes penile discharge. Urethritis symptoms also include milky discharge and pain during urination. However, since the condition is defined as an inflammation of the urethra, STDs are often involved in its development. Lastly, men may contract a yeast infection through unprotected sex. But while yeast infections often lead to thick, white vaginal discharge in women, men won’t experience discharge as a result of a yeast infection, but rather dry itchy patches on the penis.