Bumps on or around the penis are often an indication of the presence of an STD. In many instances, bumps caused by STDs are small, painless, and can be easy to overlook. Furthermore, they may also bear a strong resemblance to other conditions.
Non-STD Causes of Bumps on the Penis
Most people are familiar with acne (pimples, zits, etc.), even if they don’t expect to find it on their pubic region. Nevertheless, it’s possible for pimples and other pustules to pop up around your genitals. Any time dirt or oil blocks your skin’s pores, pimples can form. As such, practices like wearing tight-fitting underwear, working out (and sweating), or not bathing regularly can contribute to pimples forming. Pimples are red, filled with white pus, and though they may sting a bit when ruptured, they heal relatively quickly and don’t leave scars (typically).
Irritation from shaving or other cosmetic products can lead to the development of small red bumps on the pubic region. In addition, ingrown hairs or infected hair follicles are painful small bumps that contain a “blocked” follicle.
Crabs & Scabies
Pubic lice (or crabs as they’re sometimes known) and scabies aren’t technically STDs. Still, it’s possible to spread/contract pubic lice while engaging in sexual intercourse. Similarly, scabies is caused by small mites that burrow under the skin and cause a collection of small red bumps, or a rash.
What STDs Cause Penis Bumps?
Herpes bumps may appear in the mouth or lips in the form of cold sores, or manifest on or around the penis. These small red bumps are easy to overlook and will often go away after a period of time. Herpes bumps may appear similar to pimples or genital warts –– though they tend to “crust over” with time.
A syphilis chancre is a small, round, painless blister-like sore that appears on or around the genitals, anus, or mouth. Chancres can be difficult to spot, and a person may experience only a single sore marking where syphilis entered the body. That sore will heal itself after 3-6 weeks with or without treatment. But be warned –– just because the sore disappears doesn’t mean the syphilis has disappeared. Rather, it means that the infection has moved from the primary to the secondary stage of its development.
HIV Canker Sores & Lesions
It is possible for swollen glands and canker sores to appear on the inside of the mouth as a result of HIV. HIV doesn’t affect the skin directly, but it does affect the body’s ability to prevent certain skin diseases. As such, many people with HIV get lesions, warts, sores, and blisters throughout their body and that can include the penis or groin area.
How to Get Rid of Bumps on the Genitals
It’s important to consult a medical professional if you experience unusual bumps on or around your genitals. Attempting to express a genital bump or treat it with a home remedy could actually lead to further complications. Keep in mind also that if bumps on or around the penis disappear after time, it doesn’t mean that the infection that caused them has left your system.