Common Causes of Bumps on Penis

There are several reasons one can develop papules or bumps on penis. It may be either due to non-infectious cause like pearly penile papules and Fordyce spots or may be due to sexually transmitted disease like genital warts. It is obvious to fear when someone gets bumps on penis or anywhere around genital areas but not every bumps are sexually transmitted, in fact most of the bumps around penis are harmless. Being said that, it is always wise to visit the doctor and confirm the case rather than trying to diagnose your-self just by looking picture on internet.

Molluscum Contagiosum

Molluscum contagiosum are small dome-shaped and painless pearly flesh-colored bumps with central depression. MC can occur in penis, scrotum, inner thigh or any other parts of the body. Early lesion may be confused with genital warts or herpes but unlike herpes they are painless and have distinguishing features like pearly bumps with central depression. MC is harmless and is usually self-limited which gradually resolves over several months.

Pearly Penile Papules

Pearly penile papules, also called as hirsuties papillaris genitalis or hirsuties coronae glandis are small dome-shaped, skin-colored bumps seen on sulcus or corona of the glans penis. These papules are arranged in one or several rows around the base of the head of the penis. They are commonly seen in men with uncircumcised penis. They are usually asymptomatic and may persist throughout the life. No treatment is necessary except for cosmetic purpose.

Fordyce Spots

Fordyce spots are extremely common skin lesion occurring in around 80% to 95% of the total population. Fordyce spots can be commonly seen on glans penis, shaft of penis and scrotum and are usually multiple small, pinhead, painless, yellowish or whitish focally grouped macules or papules. Fordyce spots are non-infectious and totally harmless so, no treatment is required.

Genital warts or Condyloma Acuminata

Genital warts are pink to skin-colored bumps commonly seen on perianal areas, shaft of penis and scrotum. They are very common viral infection caused by human papillomavirus (HPV) which are acquired through sexual contact. Some people may never develop signs and symptoms but most develop lesion within 1-3 months of sexual contact with the partner. However, for some individuals it may take several months to years for warts to be clinically apparent. Genital warts initially starts with small, smooth or rough, flesh-colored bump and gradually increase in number and size which may be arrange in a groups resembling cauliflower appearance. Sometimes giant cauliflower like appearance may be seen on glans penis, foreskin and perianal areas which is termed as giant condyloma acuminata. Some papers suggest that they may represent a malignant transformation, verrucous carcinoma (VC).

Lichen Nitidus

Lichen Nitidus appear as small tiny clusters of red, brown violet or skin-colored shiny bumps with flat-topped. They are relatively uncommon and may appear on genitals. Although most of the lesions are asymptomatic, some may complain of mild itching. The cause of lichen Nitidus is unclear. Lichen Nitidus is harmless and no treatment is required.


Angiokeratoma are harmless lesion commonly seen on scrotum, shaft of penis and glans penis in men. They appear as tiny black, blue, or dark red dome-shaped bumps with scaly surface. Although most of the cases are asymptomatic few may be associated with pain and itching. In young individuals the lesion tend to be smaller red and less scaly, while larger, dark blue or black with more scales in old individuals. Although angiokeratoma of the scrotum is often considered as harmless condition, it has the potential to cause considerable worry and distress to patients.

Bowenoid papulosis

Bowenoid papulosis usually occurs in young sexually active individuals. Bowenoid papulosis appear as single or multiple, small red, brown to flesh-colored bumps with flat or rough surface. Lesion occurs most commonly on shaft of penis, although it can occur anywhere around ano-genital areas. They are caused by human papillomavirus (the virus that causes genital warts) and are sexually transmitted and shares clinical similarities with genital warts. They are most commonly caused by HPV 16. Bowenoid papulosis is considered to be transitional state between genital warts and Bowen disease and has potential to be malignant.

Scrotal Calcinosis

Scrotal calcinosis is an uncommon harmless condition characterized by slowly growing multiple, painless, hard scrotal papules or nodules that occur in the presence of normal calcium and phosphate metabolism.

Penile syringoma

Syringoma that are localized on penis are thought to be rare dermatological condition. Only few cases of syringoma of the penis are documented in English literature. Clinically, syringoma on the penis appear as small asymptomatic yellow-brown or skin-colored bumps that may be localized on back or lateral surface of shaft of penis. Syringoma are harmless lesion and no treatment is required.

Penile Milia

Although not quite common, milia on penis can be occasional findings in men. These are again harmless and can be treated simply by unroofing the with a tip of a needle and extracting the contents. This is often quick and painless procedure.

There are several other disease and condition that can develop on scrotum or penis some of which are listed below. Please be warned that several other disease can also develop on genital areas that has not been discussed in this articles. To know more about skin colored, pigmented or red bumps on penis please refer to another article here

  • Seborrheic keratosis
  • Penile epidermoid cysts
  • Lichen planus
  • Lichen nitidus
  • Secondary syphilis
  • Epidermoid cyst
  • Neurofibroma
  • Leiomyoma
  • Mucinous syringometaplasia
  • Acrochordons (skin tags)
  • Melanocytic nevus
  • Scabies
  • Venous varicositiess
  • Granuloma annulare
  • Nevus comedonicus
  • xanthogranuloma
  • Pseudo-Kaposi sarcoma
  • Carcinoma erysipeloids
  • Leprosy
  • Amyloidosis
  • Lipoid proteinosis
  • Tuberculide
  • Insect bite and tick bite
  • Primary lymphogranuloma venereum
  • Primary granuloma inguinale
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  1. Rao Saad says:

    I am having tgese wierd spots on the upper an d lower end of my penis. They are small round shaped. They itch a lot and are sort of red in colour. They are like 50 of them, can you please help me please I am really freaking out that it might be some cancer i am only like 14 years old and a virgin please help me.

  2. hi, probably it could be harmless condition but can u please get a clear picture of it and post it to me or post on forums here: we’ll try to suggest you and advice management if needed.

  3. Unfaithful One says:

    I am having these weird bumps on my scrotum…personally think this is MC, painless, if you press or clamp it hard enough…soft white substances will come out and small-ball-like penile syringoma IN my shaft.
    I can give you the photos if you need it via e-mail (if you don’t mind)
    can you please help me to diagnose my conditions? and tell me what to do.
    Sexual experience, just once…+- 30 months ago.

  4. Damn it! I’ve Got PPP….any way to cure it? I ‘m like 17 and cant afford expensive stuff.
    Why the hell does it happen in kids?

  5. HI,

    My sonwill soon have his circumsicion but before that he show me his penis and it has this two round shape near to each other, flesh coloured lumps in the head itself of his penis near the hole of his penis. am worried on this as it may be a cyst or what. Can you help me? His father is not around so I dont know what to do.

  6. cameron says:

    I have a single small spot on my penile shaft, it has a small depression in the middle and I can squeeze a clear liquid from it. I am 14 and a virgin, is it harmful? Or should I leave it? Iam a bit worried about it so can you please reply asap

  7. I’m 15 years old and I have a lot of red bumps all over my penis. They itch a lot and I don’t know what to do. I don’t know if its cancer or an allergic reaction and I’m a virgin so I don’t know what it could be. Please help.

  8. I have a dark spot on the head of my penis and it hurts when I touch it, please what’s the problem.

  9. I have Scrotal Calcinosis condition and exactly the same one can be seen the picture. Can you please suggest me some treatment to get rid of them. They are very annoying and itchy. They are growing in size and numbers. Thanks

  10. Krystle says:

    My boyfriend and I have been together for 5 months and I do not have any signs of anything but he has started developing little mole looking things on the bottom shaft and at the base of his penis he has 10 very small ones what could they be harmfull, or not?

  11. i think i m suffered by ppp from 5-6 months ago. and now its painfull for sometime so please provide suitable diagnosis with medicne details to remove this.

  12. Shaquille says:

    I have these bumps on my shaft they do not puss or hur just itch alot not sure if its a reaction to my detergent or what. Im kind of worried i’vee been to the doctors office and i havent been sexually active in a year.

  13. i have a bump just below the head of my penis it dont hert or itch

  14. israel Atkins says:

    Pls i have some small intradermal rash on, the shaft of my penis. it has been there like a small ring long before i became sexually active. It itches. It increases in number and spreads after sexual activity. It looks like those Fordyces spot in the picture up. Pls what is it, and how can i treat it.

  15. Patbate says:

    Can someone please email me? I have questions and photos I want to put on the site forum but it doesn’t let me and it would help describe my condition a lot easier. I am a member of this site and nobody has responded to my thread yet :/

  16. @ Patbate, please register on our forum and post on our genital dermatology forum, we would be happy to answer you…Every questions will be answered.

  17. Hi,
    I have a ton of skin colored bumps on the shaft of my penis… Could you tell me what they are I’m scared to have sex or do any of that I’m 15 and still a virgin

  18. I Have A single white damp lookin bump right above the ridge of my penis its the size of a pea it hurts when isqueeze it n small amounts of blood come out when isqueeze but it doesnt look like hetprs or warts by yhe pics please help and im uncircumcised

  19. i have 2 (separated) small white dots (pimple like) on the INNER SKIN of the penis shaft when u pull the penis skin fully. It is painless and very small white pimple head like. When you try to squeeze it, nothing comes out.

  20. I haven’t had many partners, the 3 out of 4 partners I did have I used condoms,hell sometimes I used two lol, well me and my girlfriend have been dating for a while now, she had less partners then I, she’s a good girl wouldn’t cheat etc. Well we had sex on her period then not to long after I had a bump or two pop up now I have like 4 but they don’t look like warts, they don’t have a white head either they are skin toned no pain, just weird to look at lol, I’m kinds worried because I ain’t a dirty person, if thus is warts what should I do, I don’t need to go to a hospital about it because the military, so what can I treat it with

  21. Hi i am lock…i have bumps on my penis like 10-13ish. but are nothing listed i think. and very shy around my girlfriend becuse of it. i can send pics if that will help

  22. Sandile Shezi says:

    Hi. I have pearly penil papules, i am panicing. Please help me with more info about it and how to get rid of it.

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