Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : February 17th 2017 Contents A28 body & soul
guardian.co.tt Friday, February 17, 2017
Scary things that happen
to the penis when you age
The droop: According to Steixner, your scro-
tum will droop as you get older. It's an unavoid-
able aspect of manly aging thanks to a loss in
muscle mass. At its most extreme, you develop
what Steixner calls "splash down" syndrome,
which is exactly what it sounds like. When you
sit to use the toilet, your scrotum actually hits
There's hope, however, thanks to an increasingly
popular procedure called scrotoplasty. That's right,
you can get a testicle-job and spare your septuage-
narian self the indignity of the splash down
There will be shrinkage: No, not the out-of-
the-pool constriction we all know. This is a persis-
tent, progressive loss of size as you age. What does
that equation look like? Normal cells, once hale and
hearty, get replaced by non-elastic fibers called col-
lagen, which just sort of reel in the whole apparatus.
Want to make it worse? Keep building up that beer
gut. As your belly gets bigger, the fat pad pushes out
and a larger penile percentage gets buried under the
skin. Gain weight, lose length. Simple math. "For
every 30 pounds you shed, you add an effective half-
inch in length," says Steixner.
Going around the bend: Into your autumn years,
you develop curvature. You'll dogleg left. You'll pull
right. Thanks to repeated trauma from seemingly
harmless things like sports and sexual activity, scar
tissue is accumulating along the length of your penis.
And if that isn't unsettling enough, this scar tissue
does not build up symmetrically. Where you were
once an arrow, you become a bow.
Erectile dysfunction: There are more than 30
million men with ED, and the reason behind it boils
down to blood loss. "Having ED is like having a heart
attack of the penis," explains Steixner. "And prevent-
ing it involves pretty much the same advice you give
to someone with a heart condition. Eat well, exer-
cise---control those and you should be fine."
Contending with ED is a billion-dollar market,
with treatments from prescription pills and injec-
tions to boost blood flow, to penile implants designed
to give men a natural erection without medicine. "If
you take care of yourself, however, you can avoid all
that," Steixner says. "I have patients in their 90s who
Will I go bald? Study
shows complex answer
Genetics of male pattern baldness. University
of Edinburgh researchers found 287 genes linked
with hair loss Douglas Robertson, University
of Edinburgh Centre for Cognitive Ageing and
Cognitive Epidemiology / PLoS Genetics.
It turns out that hair loss is very complicated genet-
ically, the British team reports in the Public Library
of Science journal PLoS Genetics.
Although hair loss runs strongly in families, men
cannot always look at their fathers and predict their
own fates, hair-wise. Some can blame their mothers,
the researchers found.
The trawl though all of the men's genes found 40
linked with baldness on the X chromosome. The rest
were scattered across the genome.
Of the men in the study, 16,700 had no hair loss.
Another 12,000 had slight hair loss, 14,000 had mod-
erate hair loss and 9,800 had severe hair loss.
The researchers linked each man's genetic pat-
tern with the degree of hair loss. Those with few-
er-than-average hair loss genes were predictably less
likely to go bald. Only 14 per cent in this group were
bald and 39 per cent hadn't lost any hair at all. And
58 per cent of those with the top 10 per cent count
of baldness genes also had some hair loss.
That makes the genetic pattern only somewhat
However, it's possible to predict whether a man
will lose hair with pretty good certainty. Most are
fated to at least have their hair thin out. "Male pattern
baldness affects around 80 per cent of men by the age
of 80 years," the researchers wrote. (NBC)
have perfect erections because they've
taken care of themselves." Finally, some
The Big C: Most men are familiar
with the very real risks of prostate
and testicular cancer, and symptoms
of these are something to watch for
as you age. What's the worst that can
happen? Don't ask. Okay, you asked:
"In extreme cases, a complete removal
of the penis is required," Steixner says.
As for the less horrifying, more likely
changes we talked about at first, know
that as you age, your testosterone lev-
els will decrease. That means slight
but consistent loss in size. You can
also look forward to decreased nerve
function and sensitivity, which means
difficulty achieving orgasm. In other
words, your old man penis is going to
last longer, but get shorter. Ponder that
good-news/bad-news scenario at your
(Men's Health Magazine)
Eating well and exercise can avoid all the bad
possibilites as you age.
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