Dr. Kate is an OB/GYN at one of the largest teaching hospitals in Boston who lectures nationally on women’s health issues and conducts research on reproductive health. She regularly (and generously!) answers your medical questions here on EMandLO.com. To ask her your own, click here.
Dear Dr. Kate,
Hi, I have some concerns about my boyfriend and his private parts…. he has a lump on the lower part of his penis: it’s got blood in it and it’s about the size of a marble. I’m really concerned it could be something bad or it could be something that I can get if we have sex. So I refuse to have sex till he knows what it could be. Do you have any clue on what it could be?
— Closed for Business
Lumps and bumps in the genitals can be a whole host of things. The short answer is that most STDs tend to look like ulcers (small or large, one or many), white bumps (warts) or cysts (herpes). The kind of lump you’re describing is unusual — and he needs to see a doctor as soon as he can, to make sure it’s not something more dangerous. It doesn’t sound like an infection, meaning you’re probably not at risk (though I can’t be sure without an examination). But I would be worried that this lump could burst when you’re having sex (if it really does have blood in it) — so see if that possibility is enough to get him to a doctor sooner rather than later.
— Dr. Kate