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July 15, 1983

Frictional Dermatitis of Onan

JAMA. 1983;250(3):362. doi:10.1001/jama.1983.03340030024020

To the Editor.—  We wish to report a heretofore unlabelled condition that we believe to be a not rare male affliction. Five men, aged 22 to 40 years, were seen at the dermatology clinic at the University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston, over a four-month period in late 1982 with a distinctive penile dermatitis that we attributed to masturbation. In each case, patients complained of a pruritic penile eruption of one to three weeks' duration. Physical examinations disclosed subacute to chronic eczema on the penile corona and, in one patient, shaft. A linear distribution of lesions suggested an exogenous origin for the dermatitis. In more chronic cases, lichenification and hyperpigmentation were appreciated.Evaluation included exclusion by history of causes of penile allergic contact dermatitis,1 potassium hydroxide preparation to exclude candidosis, Gram's stain to exclude bacterial infection, and a VDRL test. History and complete cutaneous examination did not support diagnoses