Sorry about the late response, once again.
Well, I’ve mostly been in “trying to live with it” mode for a while, so no dramatic change here. (There’s one thing that’s at least a little interesting, more on that below.) Since it’s quite a while since my last post here, I’ll just go through what’s been happening since:
-The new round of Canesten didn’t do anything (surprise).
-I booked an appointment outside the public system. More expensive, but worth a try. She thought she saw some “irritation”, but couldn’t reach any more clear of a diagnosis than “unspecified balanitis”. She didn’t think it looked like some permanent damage from using steroids etc. Despite my concerns about it, she wanted me to try another steroid cream (but only for 4 days), and had some more steps for me to follow, like reducing washing with soap to at most every other day, dry very well after showering and before putting any cream on it, (she even wanted me to use a hairdryer, but in my experience it didn’t really dry the skin any faster or better than just letting it air dry for a little while) and also recommended two different creams that I could try after the short steroid treatment. None of this had any effect, although I didn’t give it a lot of time. (Not all of this was new to me anyway.)
-I booked another appointment with the same doctor to report back after a few weeks, and also had a biopsy in mind. Not so much because I thought that it would actually lead to much, more of a mental thing of having tried “everything”. When the treatment had had no effect, she wanted to send me to a clinic that specializes in std’s and such. Not because she thought I had one, but because looking at genital skin is basically what they do. It’s also in within the public system, so it would be cheap. (Actually, to this day I haven’t payed anything for that consultation. It’s either completely free or they forgot to send me the bill.) I had come there mentally prepared to do a biopsy, and I felt a little annoyed to pay all that money just to have her send me somewhere else. So we ended up doing one, despite the fact that I felt she was mildly leaning towards letting those other people look at it first. As I was laying there waiting for her and a nurse to cut a little piece of my dick out, I wondered if I was taking things a little too far (what with the chances of a noticable scar and such). The procedure was mildy unpleasant for a few seconds, and the scar is now more or less unnoticable. She would send the results to the other clinic and book me an appointment.
-The biopsy showed nothing wrong, but there were signs of some “thickening of the skin”, which I found weird because it’s the exact opposite of what I’ve always thought it looked like. I didn’t really push the doctors on what it could mean, but it didn’t seem like it was an interesting find to them.
-The visit to the std clinic was sort of interesting. She was very open and talkative, but didn’t think there was anything wrong when inspecting it. When I pointed to the sudden increase in visible little veins and so on, she said that sort of thing happens and pointed to how her hands were more veiny now than when she was younger. (In my case it all happened a little too suddenly to just be about “growing older” I think. I’m 33, btw) She saw no reason to start any sort of treatment. She commented that my glans looked sort of dry and that I should cut back on the soap. She was right about this, as I had actually noticed it myself, following a little period where I had upped the use of soap again (sometimes twice a day). Another one of my little experiments, I guess. I toned it down and the slightly wrinkly, dry look was gone in days. (According to her the best way to wash your penis is to just use luke warm water.)
In a sense she basically confirmed a hunch I mentioned in an earlier post, where I said that sort of feels like nothing is actually “wrong” (anymore). Something happened to my dick that left it looking different, but there’s nothing to “heal”. Some dicks look like this. Mine didn’t use to, but it does now. That’s how it seems a lot of the time, and it’s one of the reasons why I’ve basically been (or at least trying to be) in “acceptance mode”. I wouldn’t be surprised if a lot of people would think I have been going a little overboard with the obsessing over this thing, but hey it’s not “any ol’ bodypart” we’re talking about here, and I can’t help but compare to what it used to look like, not what might be some natural variance out there.
There’s a couple problems with this theory, though. The first is that the two other doctors didn’t think it was “nothing”. (The last doctor actually knew them both and thought they were really good doctors.) They all probably saw different “versions” of it, over such a long time it’s hard to remember the exact condition for each visit, since it changes constantly anyway. I’m pretty sure the redness wasn’t that strong in the last three consultations.
The other problem is the flare ups I’ve been referring to earlier. These can be very sporadic, but still seem too be pretty obviously in conflict with the “nothing is wrong” theory. My description of it left both of the two last doctors scratching their heads, and they needed to see it for themselves, or at least a pictures of it. When I told the last doctor that they tend to happen if I get a little sloppier with the hygiene for a day or two, she couldn’t see why that sort of minor thing should provoke anything. I got her card and was welcome to come back, so I’ve actually been toying with the idea of intentionally provoking a flare up, and get an appointment quickly to show her. I haven’t done it so far, though. The flare ups always feel like a setback, and now I haven’t had them in quite a while. I still think about it, though.
The one at least slightly uplifting thing I’ve been experimenting with lately, is keeping the foreskin retracted for longer periods of time when I have the chance, i.e. lounging at home. It’s not the first time I’ve tried or thought about this, but after seeing a couple of other people online with similar (or worse) problems recommending it, I decided to give it a more serious try. The only method I’ve found of doing this without actually using a hand all the time is to have the waistband of sweatpants or boxers hold it back. (Sometimes living alone has its advantages :p ). I been doing things like watching entire movies like this, and it does indeed seem to have an effect, although it’s pretty inconsistent, and I don’t feel like I’ve stumbled unto a “fix” just yet. But, the redness seems to be toned down more often. So far it seems to have a soothing effect rather than actually “fixing” something on a deeper level. It’s more about how likely the redness is to be “lighter”, or basically gone entirely (sometimes to the extent that it almost looks too pale). That light and non-red state is pretty nice to see. I won’t say it’s very first time it’s been like that since this all started, but it does seem to happen more, the more I do this thing. It makes me wonder if I can make some subsantial progress if I do it for longer and more consistently over a period of weeks. I noticed that it can give the glans etc a rougher, drier (obviously) feel, sometimes with a drop in sensitivity, but so far this seems temporary.
Sorry about the long read, I’m using this thread a bit like a journal, I guess.
Last edited by Norsey : 03-23-2015 at .