Indian J Sex Transm Dis Indian J Sex Transm Dis
Official Publication of the Indian Association for the Study of Sexually Transmitted Diseases
Indian J Sex Transm Dis
The Journal | Search | Ahead Of Print | Current Issue | Archives | Instructions | Subscribe | Login    Users online: 489   Home Email this page Print this page Bookmark this page Decrease font size Default font size Increase font size

  Table of Contents  
Year : 2014  |  Volume : 35  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 155-157

Approach to balanitis/balanoposthitis: Current guidelines

Department of Skin and VD, Baroda Medical College, Vadodara, Gujarat, India

Date of Web Publication9-Oct-2014

Correspondence Address:
Ipsa Pandya
Department of Skin and VD, Baroda Medical College, Vadodara, Gujarat
Login to access the Email id

Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0253-7184.142415

Rights and Permissions


How to cite this article:
Pandya I, Shinojia M, Vadukul D, Marfatia Y S. Approach to balanitis/balanoposthitis: Current guidelines. Indian J Sex Transm Dis 2014;35:155-7

How to cite this URL:
Pandya I, Shinojia M, Vadukul D, Marfatia Y S. Approach to balanitis/balanoposthitis: Current guidelines. Indian J Sex Transm Dis [serial online] 2014 [cited 2021 Nov 30];35:155-7. Available from:

   Introduction Top

Balanitis describes inflammation of the glans penis and posthitis means inflammation of the prepuce. In practice, both areas are often affected together, and the term balanoposthitis then used. It is a collection of disparate conditions with similar clinical presentation and varying etiologies affecting a particular anatomical site [Table 1]. Balanitis is common in uncircumcised men as a result of poorer hygiene and aeration or because of irritation by smegma and in many cases preputial dysfunction is a causal or contributing factor. Balanitis may be more severe in the presence of some underlying medical conditions. It has been reported as a source of fever and bacteremia in neutropenic men and candidal balanitis may be especially severe in patients with diabetes mellitus. [1]
Table 1: Conditions affecting the glans and prepuce2

Click here to view

   Clinical features Top

Symptoms and signs vary according to etiology. Descriptions of the typical appearances of infective balanitides are discussed in detail [Table 2].
Table 2: Infectious causes[2]

Click here to view

   Approach to patient with balanitis Top

Diagnosis [Table 2]

Balanitis is a descriptive term covering a variety of unrelated conditions, the appearances of which maybe suggestive, but should never be thought to be pathognomonic, and biopsy is sometimes needed to exclude premalignant disease.

Management [Table 2]

The objectives of management are:

  • To minimize sexual dysfunction
  • To minimize urinary dysfunction
  • To exclude penile cancer
  • To treat premalignant disease
  • To diagnose and treat sexually transmitted disease.

*All persistent/undiagnosed genital lesions regardless of appearance must be evaluated for herpes[Figure 1]
Figure 1: Herpetic balanitis

Click here to view

Take home message:

  • Predisposing factors include poor hygiene and over washing, over-the-counter (OTC) medications, as well as nonretraction of the foreskin
  • Many cases of balanitis seen in practice are a simple intertrigo; that is, inflammation between two layers of skin with bacterial or fungal overgrowth
  • Rapid resolution can be achieved most frequently in practice by advising the patient to keep his foreskin retracted if possible, having advised him of the risk of paraphimosis
  • Saline baths are also useful and medicated OTC talcum powders are helpful in drying the area. This advice is simple, but compliance may be challenging
  • Many patients will present having tried antifungal creams, often obtained OTC. Such cases usually come with relapse. The simple measures have a more durable effect
  • HIV should be ruled out in every case not responding to therapy/having atypical presentation.

   References Top

Edwards S. Balanitis and balanoposthitis: A review. Genitourin Med 1996;72:155-9.  Back to cited text no. 1
Edwards S, Bunker C, Ziller F, van der Meijden WI. 2013 European guideline for the management of balanoposthitis. Int J STD AIDS 2014;25:615-26.  Back to cited text no. 2
Yanofsky VR, Linkner RV, Pompei D, Goldenberg G. Current update on the treatment of genital warts. Expert Rev Dermatol 2013;8:321-32.  Back to cited text no. 3


  [Figure 1], [Table 2]

  [Table 1]

This article has been cited by
1 Penile involvement of immunoglobulin a vasculitis/Henoch-Schönlein purpura
Ummusen Kaya Akca, Ezgi Deniz Batu, Oguzhan Serin, Omer Faruk Ipek, Orkun Aydin, Ozlem Teksam, Yelda Bilginer, Seza Ozen
Journal of Pediatric Urology. 2021; 17(3): 409.e1
[Pubmed] | [DOI]
2 Balanitis and balanoposthitis: causes, symptoms and therapy
A.A. Kaminsky, K.T. Plieva, D.R. Mildzikhova, I.M. Korsunskaya
Klinicheskaya dermatologiya i venerologiya. 2020; 19(4): 534
[Pubmed] | [DOI]


Print this article  Email this article


    Similar in PUBMED
   Search Pubmed for
   Search in Google Scholar for
    Article in PDF (583 KB)
    Citation Manager
    Access Statistics
    Reader Comments
    Email Alert *
    Add to My List *
* Registration required (free)  

   Clinical features
    Approach to pati...
    Article Figures
    Article Tables

 Article Access Statistics
    PDF Downloaded447    
    Comments [Add]    
    Cited by others 2    

Recommend this journal