|Trying desperately to measure up
Not recommended for injection
Doctors in Asia are treating an increasing number of men with severe injuries who have tried to increase the size of their penises by injecting themselves with Vaseline and other oils.
Now doctors in the West say the trend for self-injection is catching on in the UK and the US.
All in the name of the perfect body.Injuries consist of severe deformations caused by tissue damage and erectile dysfunction.
Gangrene can also develop if injection causes infection.
"The practice of embellishing the human body by injecting oils beneath the skin has been known for over a century," according to urologist, Institute of Urology and Nephrology (IUN) in London, Mr Manit Arya.
"Increasing the size of the girth of the penis is common in South East Asia as well as in Japan."
"For instance, in Japan, the Yakuza often plant spherical objects under the skin of the penis to increase its size," said Mr Manit.
Doctors believe that men in Britain may be becoming interested in the practice after travelling to Asia on holiday.
However, Mr Manit and his colleagues at the IUN were extremely surprised when a 31-year old British born man presented at their clinic for treatment recently for gross abnormality of the penis and ulceration as a result of injecting oils under his skin."This was the first case we had seen. It was a very interesting case.
"The man had used a high-pressure pneumatic grease gun to inject his penis.
"But the girth of the man's penis continued to grow and he was no longer able to achieve an erection.
"He needed urgent treatment for both problems."
The man was treated by careful removal of dead tissue under the skin of the penis by surgery.
He was also offered psychological counselling.
He apparently injected himself with oil to give himself more confidence sexually.
Although plastic surgeons currently conduct gender operations where a man or woman has their genitals altered, no plastic surgeon will conduct a penis girth enlargement operation.
"Unlike breast implants where some women experience severe side effects, in all of these cases of penis enlargement by injection of oils, dangerous side effects develop," Mr Manit said.
"The skin of the penis either dies or else becomes severely ulcerated in all cases."
Gender operations are currently performed in the UK when a doctor believes a person's psychological health depends on a sex change operation.
Mr Manit was one of the researchers of a IUN team who recently published a paper on grease gun injury in the Journal of The Royal Society of Medicine.