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What do acne-like pimples on a penis mean?

What does it mean if I have pimples on my penis that resemble acne pimples on my face? Is it possible to actually get acne on my penis, or is it more likely that this could be an STD? If it is acne, what is the best way to treat it? Can I just use the same acne meds I use on my face?
Pimples are caused when skin pores become clogged with dead skin and other debris, leading to inflammation and a buildup of white material. These are called whiteheads. In grown hairs are a similar problem, where the hair shaft doubles back on itself and causes inflammation at the base. Both of these conditions can occur on the penis. Since the skin of the penis is very sensitive, it is best to stick with good hygiene rather than the application of harsh chemicals. One sexually transmitted infection that is sometimes mistaken for pimples is herpes. Herpes causes lesions on the shaft of the penis that are round blisters with clear fluid that sit on top of a red base. When the blister breaks, they can turn into small ulcers. The herpes lesions are usually quite painful or have a burning sensation associated with them. As always the diagnosis and the management of your particular condition will require a physical examination by your personal physician. Setting up an office visit with your primary care doctor is advised.
This answer is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice.
If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor or (in the United States) 911 immediately. Always seek the advice of your doctor before starting or changing treatment. Medical professionals who provide responses to health-related questions are intended third party beneficiaries with certain rights under ZocDoc’s Terms of Service.

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