Can Medication Cause Peyronie’s Disease?
I discovered a lump in my penis on my fiftieth birthday. I was initially scared that this was cancer until I got an appointment at the sexual health clinic. Although relieved it wasn’t cancer, I wasn’t exactly overjoyed to get the correct diagnosis once I had understood the implications! Although the symptoms were mild at first, one of my worries was not knowing how much worse it could get.
I was referred to a Urologist, who confirmed the diagnosis and outlined the treatment options. None of these appealed to me and I decided to live with it.
I found the disease to be too embarrassing to discuss with anyone other than healthcare professionals. I didn’t even feel able to discuss it with my wife.
I was convinced, and still am, that the problem was caused by daily use of a beta blocker (I was on a combination of drugs for hypertension that included Atenolol). I believe that the side effects of beta blockers are problematic for physically and sexually active males and should be avoided if there is a good alternative treatment.
Discontinuing the beta blocker had a positive effect on the disease. The curvature didn’t progress beyond ‘moderate’ and the symptoms gradually resolved. Now in my sixties I can say that I have been unaffected by the disease for several years, although I have only recently discovered the positive effect on libido of discontinuing Verapamil, an anti-arrhythmic drug.
My advice to anyone with symptoms of Peyronie’s is:
- Don’t despair, there is hope
- Get an early diagnosis and rule out other possibilities
- Consider treatment options but don’t make any hasty decisions as the condition can resolve itself in certain circumstances
- Consider whether medication could be the cause and investigate alternatives
- Consider the impact of certain medications on your sex life and consider alternatives
- Discuss the problem with your sexual partner if you feel able to
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