Hormone and radiation therapy for prostate cancer can cause penis shrinkage, notes a study in the Journal of Urology.
Turkish researchers studied 47 prostate cancer patients who received the treatments. They found that the average stretched length of their penises decreased from 14,2 to 8,6cm over 18 months, BBC News reported.
It's not clear how hormone and radiation therapy affect penis length, but the treatments may have an effect on penis tissue, the researchers said. They recommended that patients should be warned before they receive these treatments that they may experience penis shortening.
Dr Chris Hiley, head of policy and research at the Prostate Cancer Charity in the UK, said it's vital for prostate cancer patients to be alerted about this possible side effect.
"Men can be caused needless worry by unexpected changes in their body which impact on their quality of life. These must always be taken seriously," Hiley told BBC News.
"We would urge men not to be put off seeking treatment or advice about prostate cancer because of this, but to make sure they talk to their doctors in detail about all the possible side effects of a particular treatment," Hiley said. - (HealthDayNews, January 2007)