Wed | Mar 20, 2019

Dear Doc | Virgin has size, cancer fears

Published:Sunday | April 22, 2018 | 12:00 AM

Q Dear Doc, I am a 23-year-old virgin and will be married soon. The problem is that my fiance's penis is too big. We did not have sex, but we play around a lot so I know. I also saw my father's once when he was in the bathroom and I have seen my brother's but my fiance's own is much bigger and I am afraid it may hurt me. Some of my girlfriends say that when it is too big, I can get cancer of my cervix after a time. I need your advice.

A Your concerns are shared by many young women who are new to sex. The vagina is a very elastic organ that allows a baby to pass through, no human penis is that large, so do not worry. However, in females who have never had sex, the vaginal opening is protected by a piece of flesh (hymen) which ruptures and may even bleed on first-time intercourse. There may be some mild discomfort, but if enough time is spent in foreplay to allow the vagina to relax and lubricate, it will hardly be noticeable.

Your fears about cervical cancer is another story. There is no research that correlates cervical cancer with penis size. The risks for cervical cancer include the following:

- Multiple sex partners or a partner with multiple sex partners.

- Young age of first sex.

- Sexually transmitted infections.

- Weakened immune system.

- Chronic inflammation in the genital area.

- Family history of cervical cancer.

- Cigarette smoking.

The above factors increase the chances of getting HPV (human papilloma virus) which is the causative agent in cervical cancer.

Absence of risk factors does not make a woman immune to cervical cancer, so all sexually active women should have an annual Pap smear.


White spots on fingernails


Q Dear Doc, I have these white spots coming up on my fingernails. Can you say what they are? I do not see any on my toenails. They have been there for six months. They grow out with the nail. I cut them, but they still come back. What can I do ?

A Pleasant day to you. White spots on the nails are usually due to injury to the nails caused by knocking the hands/feet during daily activities/sports. Since the nails take a long time to grow out (six to nine months for fingernails, 12 to 18 months for toenails) the spots will be there long after the injury.

The injury takes longer to show up in toenails due to their slower growth and lower blood flow.

There is no specific treatment, one just has to allow them to grow out or cover them with nail polish. The best is prevention of injury by paying more attention to your hands and feet. The use of gloves for house chores or gardening may be helpful.


Son complains of knee pain


Q Hello Doc, I am worried about my teenage son. He is 14 years old and keeps complaining of pain in his right knee. He did not bounce it and he does not play a lot of sports. I took him to the doctor who checked him out and said that nothing is wrong with him ... just growing pains. Is there such a thing ?

A Thank you for your question. Pain in the legs and around the knees can occur in teenagers during a growth spurt. This is when the bone, muscles, and connective tissue increase in length and girth. These 'growing pains' are usually on both sides, so a localised right knee pain needs further investigation to rule out the possibility of fractures, arthritis or tumours. Perhaps an orthopaedist (bone specialist) may be able to shed some light on the matter.


Creepy father-in-law


Q Dear Doc, I am living with my boyfriend in his parents house. We plan to get married shortly and move out.

I wish we could move tomorrow, as I am not comfortable there. I found out that whenever we are having sex, the old man is listening at the door. I got up to go to the bathroom couple nights and was frightened when I pushed the door and saw him. He said that he was on his way to the bathroom. His bathroom is in his bedroom so I know he is lying.

I told my boyfriend about it and he got upset and did not speak to me for days. Because of this, I cannot relax when we have sex. Now I also lock our room door at night. Do you think I should speak to his wife about his behaviour?

A Good day to you, my deepest sympathies. Discussing the issue with your future mother-in-law, may not be the best thing and could damage all your relationships. The best thing is for you and your boyfriend to move out as fast as possible.


Is smoking ganja better


Q Dear Doc, I always hear that smoking ganja is better than cigarettes. I smoke around four cigarettes per day but because of the problems it may cause down the road, I plan to switch to the weed instead. What you think, Doc?

A Good day to you, let's face it, smoke is smoke, no matter the source whether from cigarettes, ganja, garbage, paper, chimney, or car exhaust - they all cause lung damage with chronic exposure. This damage may eventually lead to lung and other cancers.

Therefore, it is in your best interest to quit and find other means of recreation. Meantime, do not forget that smoking is banned in public places and you can be charged if the law is enforced. Smoking also exposes others around you to the same risk of cancer, so be your brothers' keeper and quit this habit.


Concerned about bumps on penis


Q Dear Doc, I have some white fine bumps around my penis, they are there since I was a teenager. They do not itch nor cause any pain. I was told that they are pockets of fat. Is this normal ? Does every man have them?

A Pleasant day to you. These seem like pearly penile papules, which are fine projections of the skin around the base of the head of the penis. The exact cause is unknown, but many men have them and they are not known to be harmful nor contagious. There are other possibilities such as:

- milia (sweat glands)

- viral infection

- genital warts

See your healthcare provider to ascertain the most likely cause.