Small bumps on his dick. Is he cheating on me?

I'm sorry I haven't been posting new Q&As this summer. I have been very busy carrying out crucial research on queefing and genital piercings.

I have still been sending personal replies to any particularly important or urgent questions. Now that I have a little more time I'm back to posting some public responses on this page and on the YouTube channel.

So if you have any questions you want to ask go ahead and know I am responding as usual. Now, please enjoy todays question about a lumpy dick head.

Q

Hi Pro Boner. I’ve been with my current boyfriend for just under 6 months. We’ve been sexually exclusive the whole time (I hope) and both got tested for STDs at the beginning of our relationship before deciding to not use condoms.

So here's my problem: I noticed the last couple of times that I gave him a blowjob that he has A LOT of small raised lumps just under the head of his penis. I am really freaking out about this.

I’ve looked online and spoken to friends (male and female) and I am worried that he’s showing symptoms of an STD, that there is something medically wrong, or that it's some kind of hygiene related thing (they look like small whiteheads)?

I haven’t told him about the lumps yet because I don’t want to scare him or make him feel self-conscious about it. Plus I want to know what it is before confronting him about it. Do you know what these lumps are? If it is an STD does it mean he’s been cheating on me? And what is the likelihood that I have contracted it also, from unprotected sex and blowjobs?

A

HELLO. Due to your description and their location, I think that your boyfriend’s dick lumps are actually pearly penile papules. Although of course, I cannot make an official diagnosis without seeing his penis (or at all actually because I am not a medical doctor).

Pearly penile papules are fantastic. They have a great name full of alliteration that provokes imagery of beautiful jewellery. And they are neither infectious nor contagious.

Pearly penile papules (‘hirsuties coronae glandis’ or ‘hirsutoid papillomas’) are small white or flesh-coloured bumps that most often form on the ridge of the glans penis (dick head). They are not a symptom of an STI, rather just a perfectly normal and harmless anatomical variation, meaning some people simply have them. I’d suggest doing a Google image search to check if this is what you’re seeing on your boyfriend.

If the delicious images that you find online resemble your boyfriend's bumps then speak to him and ask if he is aware (he probably is – most men are quite familiar with their genitals). 

Pearly penile papules are often mistaken for an outbreak of genital warts. If his bumps haven’t been present for long or if they don’t look like the examples that you find on Google images he should indeed consult a doctor to have them checked out. In fact, it’s always best to get any lumps and bumps checked out by a doctor. If it does turn out that the bumps are a symptom of an STI then you should get yourself checked out also. Many STIs can be contracted through both unprotected vaginal and oral sex, and I think it’s worth mentioning that the very beginning of a relationship may be quite premature to forego condom use.

Your boyfriend's dick

Your boyfriend's dick

However, him having an STI is absolutely not definitive evidence that he has been unfaithful to you. HPV AND HSV (herpes) are both very common viruses where symptoms can first develop years after you first become infected. This means it could be that he contracted an STI before you two had even met and didn’t know about it. It could even be that you yourself contracted an STI before your relationship began and have remained symptomless.

Although I recognise and applaud that you both got tested before going condomless, there are a number of possible ways in which either of you could have been virus carriers despite negative results.

Firstly it’s possible that you did not get tested for EVERYTHING. Secondly, with many STIs there is generally a window period in which you may have been exposed and become infected – but won’t test positive immediately. Thirdly there is always a risk of false negative test results. This is why regular and repeated testing is crucial for all sexually active people.

And a little side note. Going forward I would also try and work on the communication in your relationship. There are many things that will arise that might be awkward, embarrassing or scary to bring up, but it is best to be able to communicate effectively with your sexual partner for both of your safeties.


The advice offered in this column is intended for informational purposes only. It is not intended to replace or substitute any professional medical advice. If you have specific concerns or a situation in which you require professional, psychological or medical help, you should consult with an appropriately trained and qualified specialist.