The truth behind male enhancement

| Sex Columnist

With 355,671 breast augmentation procedures performed in 2008 in the U.S. alone, the thirst for bigger reproductive assets continues to rise. Women, searching for an alternative to small- or even medium-sized breasts know that the answer to their “plight” lies not in exercise, special enhancement bras or pills, but in cosmetic surgery. Products claiming to stimulate growth hormones or pump up breast “muscles” are dangerous and ineffective compared to expensive augmentation procedures.

What many don’t know is that these facts surrounding breast enlargement are similar to those concerning penis enlargement. While women can find reason for insecurity in their breast sizes, men can feel the same way about their penis sizes. A man with a self-assessed large penis may feel more self-assured around others or even more confident in bed from the beginning of a sexual interaction with another. From locker rooms to hallway gossip, penis size is singled out as a defining masculine feature, and thus many men feel self-conscious about their sizes. In fact, most men who are self-conscious about the length or girth of their penises tend to be around average (6 inches long, 4 inches in circumference).

My point here is that penis enlargement is something many men seek. Advertisers bombard the Internet and magazine classifieds with “natural” herbal remedies like horny goat weed, penis “muscle” enhancement exercises, and devices like penis pumps claiming to expand; all of these are similar to methods for breast enhancement. As most would guess, these techniques by and large do not work. The penis is not a muscle that can be built up by exercise, and in fact, such exercises advertised for penis enlargement like “jelqing” (much like intensive masturbation without developing an erection) or penis stretching are incredibly rigorous and can easily cause tissue damage or broken blood vessels.

Of the 25,000 penis enlargement pills on the market, none have ever been scientifically shown to permanently increase penis size. Finally, penis pumps, or “vacuum pumps,” draw extra blood into the part of the penis sealed off by the pump during use. But once the penis is released from the pump, the penis will return to normal size. If the pump is used for longer than 20 or 30 minutes, the penis can easily acquire tissue damage, blisters, thickened skin or ruptured blood vessels.

The only proven method to increase penis size—and this is still only by an inch or less in successful procedures—is, yes, plastic surgery, or “phalloplasty.” Procedures for width enhancement involve fat graft transfers, usually from the base of the penis at the pelvic site in overweight individuals or harvested from cadavers. Penis lengthening procedures involve cutting the suspensory ligament that holds back the penis through tension. While the lengthening process costs a mere $5,000-$7,000, it is not always successful for increasing penis length and the ligament can reattach itself within six months. The widening procedure can cost upwards of $20,000.

Costs aside, these procedures can also cause immense scarring, erectile dysfunction, loss of sensitivity, and even loss of girth due to fat reabsorption. Although breast augmentation carries risks far greater than these that can lead to serious infections and even death, the fact is that breast augmentation is a much more studied and researched procedure. The number of women who have received successful breast surgery is much higher than the number of men who have successfully increased their penis size and retained this change over time with phalloplasty. Although phalloplasty may increase in popularity in the coming years and become more developed, as of now, it is a risky course of action. The reality is, penis size doesn’t matter as much as it may seem in teen movies. Keeping the free use of one’s penis and its God-given sensitivity is much more important than any slight change in size.

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  • John Sanders

    one of the only tried and true methods that has been tested is jelqing. literally all else falls under pseudoscience or promises results it can’t achieve. it takes some good ole fashioned work but its worth it

    http://sandersreviews.com/sex/penisadvantage/

  • J

    Worthless lie of an article. LOL. I have grown 2.75 inches in legnth alone from a combination of stretching/jelquing/pumping and taking “enhancement” pills. Not to mention it has gained great thickness as well. I repeat: WORTHLESS LIE OF AN ARTICLE!!

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  • Tech

    How you you write an article like this in 2009 without giving reference to clinical studies done by doctors on extenders? They have shown enlargement without surgery is a fact. If you haven’t done your research, then discussing the thousands of men on PE forms who have used the same principles, but more intense (heat, stretching, jelqing, and pumping in combination) is pointless. These methods are free, for anyone to use, and to prove to themselves. I have, and I’m glad I did. Had I given credence to poorly researched articles like this, my penis would be an inch shorter and 1/2″ less in circumference.

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  • HR

    This article perpetuates some common myths about penis enlargement. Men have successfully been enlarging their penises with pumps for over 100 years. This may be the first time you’re hearing this because it’s a poorly researched topic.

    In 1975 there was a clinical study of a penis enlargement method which incorporated pumping and a massage technique most modern penis exercisers would recognize as jelqing. The study demonstrated an 87% growth rate and there were no injuries. Search for information on the Chartham Method and the Chartham Study.

    Penis exercises like the jelq work, but they must be done properly, and over a very long period of time before results appear. There are many books that have been written on this topic since the 1970s, and there are many men who have shown photographic evidence of their success on the free penis enlargement forums.

    Surgeons and MDs will continue to create scare stories in order to sell the knife. Surgery is the most expensive, most dangerous, and least effective technique for enlarging the penis. Those are the facts, and if you care enough for supporting evidence, it’s at your fingertips thanks to Google.

  • Gra

    Hi Scott,

    I’m going to pull a Wikipedia back on you! If you look at penis enlargement on Wikipedia, footnotes 8 and 9 will direct you to scientific research into the efficacy and safety of traction devices. Some of this research is also cited here. As mentioned above, traction devices all work in the same way – and all are proven to work.

    I agree with Lucy Moore that penis enlargement procedures can be hugely dangerous. That’s why I think it’s important that men have all the facts before they make their decisions on this sensitive topic.

  • Scott

    Plenty of scientific research? Gra, I’m going to pull a Wikipedia here and say Citation Needed. Thx.

  • Gra

    Penis surgery is NOT the only proven method of penis enlargement. Traction has been a proven method for about a decade, which is why there are so many people now using products like Jes-Extender, Male Edge and AndroPenis. All of these products are proven to increase penis size – there’s plenty of scientific research on it. They work by cell division and have no side effects whatsoever.