Body & Fitness

What’s your problem: Cysts, erectile dysfunction, low sex drive

Dr Schauer answers male readers’ questions.
Dr Schauer answers male readers’ medical questions.

Scrotal Cyst

Q. I have a sebaceous cyst on my scrotum. Why did I get it and how can I get rid of it?

A.These cysts are most often due to swollen hair follicles (think ingrown hairs or trauma to the skin).

Solution: Check with a doctor that the cyst is not something else – it should be fluctuant (meaning you can move it) and non-painful. Watch out that it doesn’t become infected. Because it is on your scrotum, a sensitive area for us blokes, see a doctor to get it removed.

Erection issues

Q. Is it normal to suffer from erectile dysfunction in your 20s?

A. A large study revealed 8 per cent of men between 20 and 30 have erectile dysfunction.

Solution: Try cutting down on alcohol and smoking, and keeping up with exercise as a first step. If the problem persists, seek advice from your family doctor as there are many ways to help.

Low sex drive

Q. Can low iron affect your sex drive?

A. Low iron levels will affect your general energy levels as iron is the main ingredient used to make red blood cells, which carry oxygen around your body.

Solution: Men who eat a well-balanced diet but are anaemic should see their doctor to figure out the cause.

Colour coding

Q. Is it more common for males to be colour blind? Why?

A. Yes, although there are different types and severities of colour blindness. Prevalence of colour vision deficiency is increased in males (3 per cent) compared with females (0.02 per cent). It is more common in males because the genes that produce photopigments are on the X chromosome. Males have only one X chromosome (XY) compared with females (XX). The male with only one abnormal X will always be affected. But if a female has one normal and one abnormal X she will have normal vision.

Misshapen penis

Q. What is Peyronie’s disease?

A. This is a condition describing an abnormal bend of the shaft of the penis. It can cause pain, erectile dysfunction and, of course, embarrassment. Doctors are not quite sure what causes it, but your genetic make-up as well as the accumulation of lots of small injuries to the penis may contribute.

Solution: There are a variety of treatments, including non-surgical options, so see your GP who will refer you to a urologist.

This content is not a substitute for personal medical advice, a diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your health provider regarding a medical condition.

Photos: Corbis, Getty Images and iStock

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