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Lymphoedema and associated swelling in the penis is an expected complication of circumcision.[1][2] The length of time that it lasts after circumcision varies and is unpredictable, but it is not uncommon for it to last many months.

Blood is supplied to the penis by arteries deep within the penis. Blood is returned to the heart by veins in the foreskin. Circumcision severs those veins, so blood has difficulty in returning to the heart. This causes a buildup of lymphatic fluid in the penis.

Swelling most commonly occurs in the residual internal mucosa between the glans penis and the circumcision scar (distal of the scar), but may also occur elsewhere.

There does not seem to be any satisfactory treatment for it except patience and time.

Lymphoedema after masturbation

Lymphoedema of the foreskin may occur after vigorous and/or prolonged masturbation. It is painless and harmless. It usually resolves within 24 hours.

External links

  • REFweb (13 November 2016). Lymphoedema, National Health Service. Retrieved 25 November 2019.


  1. REFjournal Kaplan, George W (August 1983): Complications of circumcision, in: Urol Clin N Amer. 10 (3): 543-9, PMID. Retrieved 25 November 2019.
  2. REFjournal Williams, N / L Kapilla (October 1993): Complications of circumcision., in: Brit J Surg. 80 (10): 1231-6, PMID, DOI. Retrieved 26 November 2019.