In today’s visually-oriented society, there is a growing obsession with self-image, and increasing numbers of individuals are turning to surgical enhancement in the quest for the perfect body. Cosmetic surgery such as breast implants for women, facial sculpting and other similar procedures are familiar to most people; on the other hand, while it is less often talked about, greater numbers of men are also turning to penis enhancement to increase the length and/or girth of their member. Men who are considering penile augmentation should have a good understanding of how the procedure works, as well as its potential impact on their penis health.

Why penis enhancement?

It is very common for men to feel that they do not measure up when it comes to the size of their penis, and to look for solutions to increase its length or width. There are thousands of products and techniques that are marketed as a means to "grow" the penis. Unfortunately, none of the non-surgical options have been proven to work, and in some cases, these can even cause permanent damage to the penile tissue. To date, penis enhancement surgery is the only solution with proven results.

What to expect before, during and after surgery

- Before the procedure, the surgeon will take a full medical history and conduct a thorough physical examination; the doctor will talk to the patient about his expectations. Options for anesthesia will also be discussed.

- During the procedure, the area will be shaved in order to make the necessary incisions. In uncircumcised men, a circumcision may also be performed to prevent issues related to swelling following the operation.

- The enhancement itself is carried out in one of two ways. To make the penis longer, the ligaments at the base of the penis are cut so that it hangs longer, giving the appearance of an additional 1-2 inches in length. To make it wider, fat from other parts of the body is injected into the area, giving an extra 1-2 inches in girth.

- After surgery, men are generally allowed to go home on the same day, with instructions about caring for the incisions and how long to refrain from exercise and sex while the area heals.

Possible side effects

As with any surgery, there are risks of complications, such as reactions to anesthesia, swelling, pain, and infection. All instructions given by the surgeon should be followed carefully to avoid damaging the healing tissue.

In general, penile function itself seems not to be affected by enhancement; however, some men have reported a degree of lost sensation.

Points to consider

For men who are seriously thinking about penile augmentation, there are some important issues to keep in mind.

1) First, it is essential for men to talk to their doctors about the reasons for having the surgery, its potential impact on their health, and the results they can reasonably expect from the procedure.

2) Second, men should keep in mind that the average penis is only about 2.5 inches long when flaccid, and about 5-6 inches long when erect. While the notion of a nine-inch long penis seems to have reached a sort of ideal status, only a very small percentage of men actually live up to this standard.

3) Third, a smaller-than average penis generally functions just as well as a larger one. Only a very small number of men have a condition known as micropenis, where the manhood is less than 2.5 inches long when erect. Since this problem is usually corrected through hormone therapy in childhood, most men are probably more "normal" than they believe they are.

4) Fourth, penile augmentation surgery has considerable psychological implications, so many doctors recommend that men who are considering cosmetic surgery talk to a counselor beforehand. Any anxieties should be discussed, and men should weigh the benefits against the risks, as well as talking about other options. In many cases, simply losing weight, or even shaving the hair in the area, can give an illusion of greater size without the risk factors related to an invasive medical procedure.

5) And finally, a proactive approach to penis care can also give men a greater sense of self-confidence and pride in their bodies. Making sure that the area is clean and well-groomed is essential, and including a nutrient-rich moisturizer can leave the penis looking healthy, youthful and supple. Improving the appearance of the manhood by using a penis health crème (health professionals recommend Man1 Man Oil) can help men to feel better about the equipment they were born with; and with this increased self-esteem, some men may even find that surgical enhancement is no longer a concern.