Penile discharge is any substance that comes out of the penis that’s neither urine nor semen.
This almost-liquid usually comes out of the urethra, which runs through the penis and exits at the head.
The discharge may be white and thick or clear and watery.
Noticing penile discharge during sex or arousal is perfectly normal.
This discharge comes in the form of pre-ejaculate fluid secreted from the tip of the penis alongside glands on the inner aspects of the foreskin.
But experts warn that if this discharge experiences a sudden change it could indicate something serious.
Changes in the amount, colour, odour, frequency or consistency could indicate an underlying infection or a STI.
Penis discharge – normal or not?
The amount of discharge varies from person to person, says Clarewell Sexual Health Clinic.
The health site added: “Some patients may have copious discharge enough to stain your underwear and occasionally patients feel the need to wrap their penis in tissues to contain the discharge.”
The length of penile discharge a man may experience is on average for a couple of days to weeks after getting an infection.
“However, the disappearance of discharge does not mean you have become clear of an infection.
“We often find that such patients do not seek a diagnosis for the underlying infection and as such cannot receive the right treatment and ultimately reduce the risk of onward transmission.
“If there is ongoing inflammation in the urethra, especially in the case of gonorrhoea, there is an increased risk in the scarring of the waterpipe (urethral stricture formation).”
The health site warned that for anyone experiencing penile discharge that is not pre-ejaculation or semen, to “seek medical advice as this is not a normal occurrence and requires medical attention”.
If you've noticed unusual discharge from your penis and you've recently had any type of sexual contact, it's important to rule out an STI as a potential cause.
Fortunately, it is simple to find out and requires simple urine and blood tests.
Gonorrhoea and chlamydia are two of the most common causes of penile discharge.
They require treatment with prescription antibiotics.
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