There are 2 kinds of swollen penis: the good kind and the bad kind. The former refers to a penis that swells proudly due to an influx of blood in response to an arousal signal, making the penis firm and erect and ready for sexual matters. In such cases, the swelling is often accompanied soon after by a pleasurable feeling. The bad kind is a penis health concern, when the swelling is due to something like infection or inflammation and is often accompanied by an unpleasant feeling, namely penis pain. One reason for this swollen penis pain may be a condition known as cellulitis.

A little about cellulitis

According to the Mayo Clinic, cellulitis is “a common, potentially serious bacterial skin infection (in which) the skin appears swollen and red and is typically painful and warm to the touch.” In the majority of cases, cellulitis appears on the lower leg, but it can appear anywhere on the body, and there have been many cases in which it occurred on the penis and/or scrotum, as well as on the perineum. (The perineum is that section of the body between the scrotum and the anus.)

In most cases, cellulitis is caused by either the streptococcus bacteria or the staphylococcus bacteria; when in the penis, scrotum, or perineum, it is most often streptococcus. Most often, the bacteria enters the body through a crack in the skin. This may occur when there is a wound, cut, or abrasion, but it can also occur when skin is overly dry and “cracked.” There have been some cases in which cellulitis has appeared in the penis or surrounding regions with no clear way in (that is, no cuts, etc.). In such a case, it appears that the condition occurs due to an accumulation of lymphatic fluid. When the lymph nodes become involved, either as a source of the bacteria or because the bacteria has spread there, the condition can become serious and in some instances, life threatening.


Cellulitis is often accompanied by itchiness, as well as by the aforementioned swelling, redness, and pain. Often, the redness may take on a rash-like appearance. In some cases, the swelling can be substantial.

Once cellulitis has been identified, a doctor will typically prescribe a round of oral antibiotics. Usually there is significant improvement within 3 days (although patients still need to continue treatment until the full course of antibiotics has been taken as prescribed.) If a person doesn’t respond to the antibiotics, or if a high fever is present, a hospital stay may be required to treat the cellulitis more aggressively.

Clearly, taking steps to prevent the penis pain and discomfort of cellulitis is recommended. One way to do so is to check regularly for cuts or wounds and to treat them promptly, washing with soap and water and keeping a lookout for any signs of infection. Checking for overly dry skin and providing appropriate moisturization may also help. If there are cuts or openings, or if penis skin is dry and cracked, a man should refrain from sex until things are closer to normal.

The penis pain and discomfort from cellulitis should be avoided, and keeping up the general health of the penis can help. To that end, a man should daily apply a first-rate penis health oil (health professionals recommend Man 1 Man Oil, which is clinically proven mild and safe for skin). It’s to a man’s benefit to find an oil that contains mighty moisturizing agents, such as shea butter (a high-end emollient) and vitamin E (a natural hydrator). Penis skin can also be strengthened if the oil contains a potent antioxidant; alpha lipoic acid is one, and it has properties to fight damage from unwanted oxidative stress.