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A 20-year-old male asked:

I have balanitis, but i am wondering whether it is fungal or bacterial. how can i tell which it is? is either of them life-threatening?

1 doctor answer1 doctor weighed in
Dr. Hunter Handsfield
Infectious Disease 54 years experience
It's usually not possible to know fungal versus bacterial versus "nonspecific" balanitis. The main health effect occurs if restricted foreskin (phimosis) prevents foreskin retraction. It's never life-threatening. Usually clears up with foreskin retraction and washing with soap and water a couple times a day. If that doesn't work, try an OTC yeast cream. If still no relief, see your doctor.
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Last updated Mar 23, 2021

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