Questions Patients Never Ask Me
Historically, men have been raised and conditioned by society to suck it up, man up, be silent and be strong. Should it surprise us, then, that they might not handle certain subjects with ease, like their muscle tone, beer bellies, height, and the hair on their heads?
I take care of men for a living and am honored to do it. Excuse the hyperbole for a minute, but my experience has been that men are like wild animals who may only see a doctor when in pain, scared, or perceive that they have a life-threatening condition. They also might show up if a partner or close friend asks them to. And when they arrive, I know that they would love to ask me some burning questions… if only they could muster up the courage. Unfortunately, they rarely do.
Am I normal down there (i.e. is my penis of normal size)?
Honestly, 99+% of men that I see have penis sizes that are in the normal range. And yes, there is a “normal” range, for both length and girth. So, to put an end to this issue, please do the following:
- Take a ruler and measure from the pubic bone above the penis to the end of a fully stretched flaccid penis (or an erect one).
- Compare this measurement to known normal sizes.
- Stop thinking about this.
Am I normal down there (i.e. are my testicles of normal size)?
There are also normal ranges for testicular size. Interestingly, the major variations in testis size occur with ethnicity. Normal size ranges from 16 mL to 22 mL. Typically, the length and width of a normal testicle is 4 cm long by 3 cm wide, give or take. So, stop wondering and take a ruler to the jewels to know for sure.
Is it OK that sometimes my sex drive is low?
Of course! You’re no machine! I have so many patients who see me because they have an unexpected change in sex drive and wonder what’s wrong. I learn that they are busy as hell with the stuff of life, travelling 200K miles annually, training excessively for Ironmans, negotiating an IPO, or simply just trying to survive day-to-day. Remember, stress depresses sex drive as it stimulates the wrong primitive nervous system (fight or flight). We are the descendants of cavemen – who wants to have sex when you’re being chased by a woolly mammoth? Disengage and watch what happens.
Do you think that I have low testosterone?
For some reason, men believe that testosterone rules their sex drive and their erections. In actuality, T levels, unless extremely low, have very little to do with your sexual health. Likewise, raising T levels from normal to high has nothing to do with either erections or sex drive. Try relaxing and disconnecting and watch how things improve!
Is manopause a real thing?
The term manopause is used to describe a steady decline in testosterone levels, a period that mirrors menopause, the better-known change of life that women undergo around the age of 50. Although manopause is rarely discussed, roughly half of all men will experience noticeable symptoms from this loss in testosterone. Fortunately, treatment can address many of these side effects.
Am I too old to father a child?
Age plays a role in male fertility, but not to the extent it does for women. Once men hit middle age, their ejaculate’s potency may be on the decline, but rarely prohibitively. Men can become fathers well into their 70s and beyond. The Guinness Book of World Records says the oldest man to become a father was 96 years-old.
I will leave you with a quote that I find to be great advice: “Doubt kills more dreams than failure ever will.” You are good enough.