Man’s ‘rough sex’ self-diagnosis turns out to be penile cancer

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On his 29th birthday, Wayne Martin discovered his sex injury was in fact a rare penile cancer and not a result of rough penetrative sex as he initially thought. He was diagnosed with squamous cell carcinoma — a type of skin cancer — which invaded his urethra. That was eight months after he first noticed the “torn skin” on Thanksgiving in 2012.

At 31, Martin is opening up to the world about his ordeal. “It started out like it was torn skin from rough activity, and I just treated it with some antibacterial cream and didn’t think anything of it until it started to grow. By January 2013, I knew I had an issue when the cut was getting larger. It was no longer just a rip, but had become a white mass on the bottom of the head.”

It became so painful he would struggle to wear tight-fitting underwear and use the bathroom. Bathing seemed to be the only method to ease the pain.

“I would often take five baths a day, which would help loosen the skin and cause less pain,” he explains. “I couldn’t stand for any article of clothing to touch my manhood. At that point, the pain had become too much to deal with.”

Atlanta’s Emory University Hospital is where Martin was officially diagnosed with penile cancer.

The government employee of Tallahassee, Florida, underwent a partial penectomy to remove the tumor. After a series of successful treatments to remove the mass, he can no longer have full penetrative sex.

Cancer of the penis is most often diagnosed in men over the age of 60, but younger men can also be affected, with around 25 per cent of cases diagnosed in men younger than 50. It’s believed Martin is one of the youngest sufferers of this type of cancer.

“In late August of 2013, they removed it and then a month-and-a-half later I started weeks of radiation that lasted throughout the holiday season,” he reveals.

Martin can no longer urinate while standing, and he’s having frequent urinary tract and bladder infections following the procedures and treatments.

“In the beginning I was very depressed and moody. I didn’t want to be near anyone, and when I was I would break down in tears because of everything. I find myself wondering if I will ever find a partner in life.

“It seems that in the gay culture, all people care about these days is how skinny or muscular you are and how big your Johnson is.

“So needless to say, when I tell people my story, nine times out of 10, I never hear back from the guy because he isn’t willing to be with someone who has gone through what I have.”

Martin hopes to raise money and awareness. Check out his GoFundMe page.

Penile cancer symptoms include:

  • a growth or ulcer on the penis, especially on the glans or foreskin
  • changes in the color of the penis
  • skin thickening
  • persistent discharge with a foul odor beneath the foreskin
  • blood coming from the tip of the penis or under the foreskin
  • unexplained pain in the shaft or tip of the penis
  • irregular or growing bluish-brown flat lesions or marks beneath the foreskin or on the body of the penis
  • reddish, velvety rash beneath the foreskin
  • small, crusty bumps beneath the foreskin
  • irregular swelling at the end of the penis
  • any of the above symptoms with unexplained lumps in the groin due to enlarged lymph nodes.

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