Penis & scrotum


Pearly penile papules

Last author update: 1 February 2010
Last staff update: 28 October 2020

Copyright: 2002-2024,, Inc.

PubMed Search: Pearly penile papules

Alcides Chaux, M.D.
Antonio L. Cubilla, M.D.
Page views in 2024 to date: 810
Cite this page: Chaux A, Cubilla AL. Pearly penile papules. website. Accessed April 14th, 2024.
Definition / general
  • Benign condition of 20 - 30% of normal young and middle aged males, asymptomatic
  • Also called hirsutoid papillomas, papillomatosis of glans corona
Clinical features
  • Multiple pearly gray-white fibroepithelial papillomas, 1 - 2 mm and in dorsal glans corona
  • Usually arranged in 2 - 3 rows
  • Rarely covers most of glans
  • Reduced prevalence in circumcised men
  • Has been confused with Tyson glands, which don't exist in humans (Wikipedia: Preputial Gland [Accessed 2 April 2018])
  • None required; disappears with age; CO2 laser if patients request removal (Dermatol Surg 2002;28:617)
  • Also cryotherapy, electrodesiccation, podophyllin or curettage
Clinical images

AFIP images

Regular rows of
small papules
form a ring
around the corona

Images hosted on other servers:

1 - 2 cm papules

Microscopic (histologic) description
  • Hyperkeratosis associated with a fibrovascular stroma, simulating an angiofibroma
  • No koilocytosis, no significant inflammation
Microscopic (histologic) images

AFIP images

Benign epithelial hyperplasia with vascular fibrous stroma

Differential diagnosis
  • Condyloma acuminatum: nonuniform, not arranged in rows and has HPV related changes
  • Syphilis: ulcer with indurated and punched out base, marked plasmacytic inflammation and serologic evidence of syphilis
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