Diabetes and poor diabetic control may lead to urogenital complications such as balanitis, phimosis and even erectile dysfunction.
Chronic diabetic balanitis and diabetic phimosis is a common diabetic complication, where the foreskin becomes prone to recurrent inflammation leading to scar tissue and tightening (phimosis). The balanitis is commonly caused by thrush or bacterial infection which manifest due to metabolic changes as a result of poor diabetic glycaemic control. Prolonged inflammation of the foreskin leads to scarring, and tightening of the skin and phimosis. In these chronic/prolonged cases, circumcision is usually the treatment of choice, which effectively treats the phimosis and also helps prevent further thrush and bacterial infection.
Erectile dysfunction (ED) is another common diabetic complication. Hyperglycaemia leads to narrowing of the blood vessels in the penis, which in turn leads to lack of oxygen supply to the nervous system, leading to reduced function and ED.