September 1981

Rupture of the Corpus Cavernosum of the Penis

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Surgery, General Hospital, Port of Spain, Trinidad, and the Department of Urology, Tufts-New England Medical Center, Boston.

Arch Surg. 1981;116(9):1176-1178. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1981.01380210050010

• Rupture of the corpus cavernosum ("fracture" of the penis) is an uncommon injury that occurs in an erect penis. The tunica albuginea is torn during coitus or as a result of external forces, resulting in sudden pain, swelling, and discoloration of the penis. Urethral rupture is associated with the cavernous injury in approximately 10% of cases. Treatment of the injury aims at full functional and cosmetic recovery. Nonoperative treatment results in a 10% incidence of penile deformity and requires a substantial hospital stay. However, surgical repair eliminates resultant deformity and allows for earlier hospital discharge. Three patients had fractured penises, including one penis associated with a torn urethra. Early surgical repair was performed in each patient, and the results were excellent. Prompt surgical repair should be given to all patients with a fractured penis.

(Arch Surg 1981;116:1176-1178)