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Penis Enlargement Surgery
Would you pay $10,000 in an attempt to impress the boys in the locker room or the ladies in the bedroom - with dubious results? That's the average cost of penis enlargement surgery to increase the size of the penis.
Those wanting to do it more cheaply could choose from a range of products which manufacturers claim will increase penis size. But experts say claims about the creams, pills and contraptions are all a lot of hogwash.
Creams that thicken, pills that lengthen and "devices" - the effects of which are best left to the imagination - are being advertised in newspapers, magazines and on the Internet.
The devices, many of which are penis pumps, work by forcing blood into the penis and were originally devised for men with erectile dysfunction. Experts have warned that they hold no benefit and may bruise the penis or even cause problems with ejaculation.
Head of Men's Clinic International, Nevon Ramsunder, said that the reason for the high sales of many of these "wonder" drugs and creams was the gullibility of men.
"The male sexual market is just so gullible that if I took a few Panados and painted them different colours and sold them as new penis enlargement pills, I would probably make a million bucks," he said.
Ramsunder noted that the trend was especially apparent among young men and was less common in older men. "When you get over 50, most men are more concerned with it just working than anything cosmetic," he said.
Phalloplasty surgery is considered by many in the medical fraternity as the only solution to this "problem" but even that is not without hassles and risks.
Don Hudson of the plastic surgery department at Groote Schuur Hospital in Cape Town said he performed about two penis operations every year.
"This whole thing of wanting a bigger penis comes from a gym or locker room mentality among men. They see each other in the shower and one guy thinks he's a bit smaller than the others. It's the whole does size matter thing."
Hudson said surgery was popular in Europe and the United States and the most common procedure (suspensory ligament cutting) was developed in China by a plastic surgeon named Dr Long (yes ... that is his real name).
As with any operation there were side effects and possible complications unlike using penis enlargement exercises.
One of the most apparent was more a practical problem than a medical one. "When it is extended, the angle of the penis to the body is changed so it sticks straight out. During sex, you will have to use your hand to get it in the right place," Hudson said.
The insecurity of so many men about their penises was a relatively new thing, and Hudson said the logic behind it was deeply flawed.
"The reality is that the outer third of the vagina is all that has feeling so it shouldn't make any difference whether it's longer or not," he said.
To increase the penis girth was something not to be encouraged as it was an extremely complex procedure that could give rise to a number of complications.
"I have heard horrible stories of guys losing their penises or ending up with a stump. It just doesn't make sense to me."
He said there were private surgeons performing the procedures in South Africa for those willing to pay. But for an estimated price of between $8,000 - $10,000, it's sure to hit where it hurts most.
Not the crotch ... the wallet.
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