Background: Narrowing of the prepuce in men is poorly documented, and the causes are often unknown, except in the case of clinical infections or skin diseases such as lichen sclerosus (LS). Objective: We conducted a histologic study of circumcision specimens with phimosis or paraphimosis. Methods: This prospective study included 43 men with contraction referred for circumcision. Results: LS was present in 32% of cases, but only 12% of these cases of LS had not been diagnosed before circumcision. In 31% of cases the histologic findings were normal. Subacute nonspecific inflammatory changes were diagnosed in 37% of all cases, and secondary narrowing of the prepuce in 62% of cases. It is probable that this histologic modification of the preputial mucosa is involved in narrowing of the prepuce. Conclusion: Phimosis in young adults is usually not associated with LS (only 14%). In contrast, most older patients had secondary phimosis caused by progressive LS (40%) or subacute nonspecific inflammatory changes (40%). Although all cases of phimosis in men should be treated by complete circumcision to prevent penile cancer, paraphimosis associated with preputial dyspareunia, with the exception of cases associated with LS, can be treated by corrective surgery. (J Am Acad Dermatol 1999;41:923-6.)
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American Academy of Dermatology, Inc. Publié par Elsevier Masson SAS. Tous droits réservés.