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Penile cancer is a rare malignancy and is most often diagnosed in men over the age of 50. More than 90% of penile carcinomas are squamous cell cancers and include different subtypes such as verrucous carcinoma, warty carcinoma, and basaloid carcinoma. Non-squamous penile cancers include basal cell carcinoma, melanoma, sarcomas, and adenosquamous carcinoma. Although the causes of penile cancer are not entirely understood, there are risk factors identified for the development of penile cancer. These include history of phimosis, balanitis, tobacco use, and some studies suggest an association between human papillomavirus (HPV) infection and penile cancer.
Treatment selection depends on the size, location, invasiveness, and the rate at which the cancer has spread. When diagnosed early, penile cancer is highly curable. In those cases, treatment usually involves topical chemotherapy or laser surgery. For later-stage penile cancer, therapeutic options include surgery, chemotherapy, and radiotherapy.View overview page