Doubts cast on Aussie tradie’s story of being bitten on the penis by a spider for a second time

Spider penis fetish

A spider fetish, perhaps?

While the mainstream media and online news sites were lapping up the story back in April of a Sydney tradie who was supposedly bitten on the penis by a redback spider, many of us were skeptical.

And then, when he claimed it happened again in September, in “pretty much the same spot”, our ‘bull-dust meter’ went off the scale.

Let’s first go back to the first incident on 27 April this year, and scrutinize some of his claims – many of which were taken from the transcript from this interview with Kyle Sandilands and Jackie O from radio station KIIS 1065.

  1. He felt immediate, intense pain.
    This reaction is rare. When speaking to the Sydney Morning Herald on redback spider bites Julian White, Head of Women’s and Children’s hospital toxinology department says “The initial bite may only cause mild discomfort or irritation, and sometimes is not even noticed. Pain usually increases over an hour or two and may radiate up the limb.”
  2. He was advised by emergency call operators to apply pressure.
    While this makes for a funny story of ‘Jordan’ having to stay at the site with his hands down his pants, this is not the advice that paramedics and emergency call centre workers are trained to provide. In fact the commonly accepted advice is to NOT use the pressure immobilisation technique, but to apply an ice pack or cold compress.
  3. He called for an ambulance, and when it didn’t show after one hour he got a ride with his girlfriend.
    So where was the appointed first aid person on the building site? Why couldn’t they, or another worker on site have driven him to hospital? It is not usually a recommended course of action to go to hospital via ambulance for a redback spider bite, except when the bite victim is a child, pregnant woman or elderly person.

Despite the above, it is still plausible that someone could be bitten on the genitals, especially in an outdoor toilet, as this one was. In years gone by this was a more frequent occurrence with many toilets located outside.

But then, when he claimed it happened again, it wasn’t just the writers here at Aussie Penis who were suspicious.

A few theories were bandied around over at Reddit, with our favourites as follows:

User DratThePopulation wrote:

“Second time? This guy gets off on having dangerous insects on his junk. It’s a fetish, I guarantee it.” (Read the full thread here.)

But we think user bluepooner25 may have been onto something when they wrote:

“Dr. Drew used to get people calling in on his radio show Loveline with Dr Drew and every couple of months some person would call in and say they had a spider bite on there penis. Every single instance it turned out to be an STD. I’m suspicious of this guys story, especially because he says the bite occurred on the exact same spot.” (Read the full thread here.)

Even shock jock Kyle Sandilands had this idea in mind when he suggested, albeit jokingly, that Jarrod had fabricated the story in an attempt to hide an STD from his girlfriend. Jarrod’s response to this was drowned out by laughter and other comments.

While we may never know what really happened, the bigger question to come out  of this is why would someone go to the media to tell the world about this embarrassing situation…twice?

Medical associations recommend traction devices for treatment of Peyronie’s disease

If you have noticed a bend or curve in your penis that has not always been present you may be suffering from Peyronie’s disease.

Bent road sign representing peyronie's diseaseCommon estimates on the prevalence of the condition range between 1% and 5% of men above the age of 50. Like with many other conditions relating to male genitals the true rate is unknown as many men are too embarrassed to seek help.

Peyronie’s is caused by fibrous lumps, technically known as plaques, that form internally on one side of the penis. Upon erection, this plaque stops the penis from extending to its full length on that side and therefore pulls the penis to that side. While the common result is a bend, the plaque can also cause other deformities such as bulging or depressions.

While medical experts debate the cause, anecdotal evidence suggests that it is most often caused by some sort of injury, with online Peyronie’s disease forums forums filled with stories of men developing the condition a few weeks after hearing an audible popping sound during a rough sexual experience. The theory is that the injury causes an auto-immune response from the body which creates the plaque at the site of the injury.

The Melbourne Bladder Clinic suggests that injecting repeatedly into the same site for erectile dysfunction treatment may also increase the risk in developing Peyronie’s.

While those with mild symptoms may be able to function normally, most with Peyronie’s will experience some adverse such as discomfort, pain and sexual dysfunction. Given that some research suggests that only 13% of men with the condition experienced a full recovery with no intervention, many men will put their embarrassment aside and seek some form of treatment.

Treatment options can be classified into three categories, being surgical, medicines (topical and oral) and stretching.

Surgical

Like for most surgery on our genitals, we at Aussie Penis believe that surgery should be the treatment of last resort. Among other side effects, the most alarming side effect from one of the surgical options called the the Nesbit’s procedure is shortening of the penis. And although we know we shouldn’t really care about penis size, I’m sure there are few of us who would want to make our penis shorter. Unless you are like Keith on this episode of Embarrassing Bodies, who opted for the penis-shortening Nesbit’s surgical procedure to treat his Peyronie’s, but had more than enough length to begin with.

Other surgical options are explored in this information sheet by Queensland urologist Dr Peter Campbell.

Topical and Oral Medicines

These are generally thought to be the least effective treatment. But given that they are the least invasive treatment and there is some evidence that they can at least improve, if not cure, the condition, some sufferers opt for this treatment. See this page for information on the effectiveness of topical and oral medicines.

Stretching

Stretching the penis over as period of time (usually at least months) has been shown to increase the length of the penis. Traction devices such as this one have been used by men for many years to successfully increase the length of their penis. Recently, the medical community has adopted this for the treatment of Peyronie’s disease.

The following is from Better Health Victoria, which was written in consultation with the Urological Society of Australia and New Zealand:

Penile traction device – this has proved useful, along with medical therapy, to lengthen the penis and reduce the curve in the erect state. Studies have also shown that use of a penile traction device may increase penile width, suggesting a benefit in the management of Peyronie’s disease. It has also been used pre- and post-surgery to prevent penile shortening.

Men’s Health Melbourne have even started offering traction devices as part of their treatment services for Peyronie’s disease.

For those looking to buy a device online, water based pumps are also an option with Penomet being a popular option for men with a curvature of 20% or less.

While some doctors and medical associations are open to recommending traction devices for the treatment of Peyronie’s disease, others are a little more hesitant, suggesting that most men do not have the dedication or patience to wear a device every day over the course of months, even though thousands of men have been able to do this with similar devices for the purposes of penis growth and foreskin restoration.

I know that if I am ever unlucky enough to ever suffer from the condition I would certainly be willing to try the traction device treatment before resorting to the more invasive surgical options.

And I won’t be too concerned I manage to grow some extra length as a side-effect.

 

Image courtesy of nuttakit at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

New cure for baldness brings new meaning to the phrase ‘dickhead’

Using foreskins to cure baldness?Many Australian news sites today, including the Telegraph, Sydney Morning Herald and the Age reported that a new experiment could potentially stop baldness.

Researchers have successfully grafted skin with new hair folicles onto lab mice, by using tissue from harvested human infant foreskins.

Is this a case of robbing Peter to pay Paul? On an ethical level, it would hard to justify making a cosmetic alteration to a non-consenting infant to enable another cosmetic alteration to an adult. Especially when you consider that to the original owner, the foreskin has many functional qualities which would be sacrificed for a purely cosmetic alteration to someone else. Fine if this truly was medical waste, but it is commonly accepted that there is almost never a medical reason to circumcise an infant.

I find it odd that this ethical and moral minefield didn’t rate a mention from the traditional Australian media.

This would not be the first time that infant foreskins have been used for the vanity of adults. An Australian distributor for face cream SkinMedica has found out that many Australians are not going to accept the use of harvested human foreskins in its products, with blogs drawing attention to the issue and complaints submitted to the company’s website. Oprah Winfrey has also been met with protests over her endorsement of the face creams.

Many Australian men already think that those who are balding should just accept it, and that those who resort to medical procedures to cure their baldness should be called ‘dickheads’. (With Shane Warne receiving the lion’s share of this sentiment). Perhaps this sentiment was a little harsh, but I think that for anyone who puts infant foreskins on their heads, the label is justified.

Image courtesy of David Castillo Dominici / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

AMI oral strips and nasal sprays: do they actually work?

If you have been up past your bedtime you have probably been exposed to some television advertisements for Advanced Medical Institute’s (AMI)  nasal sprays and more recently, oral strips. In addition to the commercials, AMI has also been a prolific advertiser through billboards, both the stationary roadside variety and the mobile variety towed through the streets by motor scooters. AMI oral strips do they work?Most use themes such as ‘want longer lasting sex’ or ‘more sex’ and ‘oral strip to last longer making love’. While action has been taken against the company, claiming that the advertising is offensive, I’ve found them only slightly embarressing, especially when confronted with them while in the company of my mother. Many other Australian men may only be concerned with whether the oral strips and nasal spray technologies actually work.

The ubiquity of the advertising provides the first clue in determining the effectiveness of AMI’s products. If the products did work, would they need to advertise them so much? In this age news of a product that really does work can spread very quickly through social media. And in the case of a medical product, wouldn’t it be sold through recommendations from doctors? Or perhaps the intimate nature of the problem AMI is claiming to fix is one which customers are are not comfortable disclosing on social media.

Which leads me to the question of what problem does AMI claim to fix with these oral strips and nasal sprays? Remarkably AMI’s website claims that their oral strip product treats both premature ejaculation and erectile dysfunction, cleverly expanding their target market to include a broad age group of Australian men. Putting this through ‘common sense’ test, you would have to ask if it plausible that their active ingredient would successfully treat a man who suffers from premature ejaculation (possibly caused by too much excitement, responsiveness and sensitivity) as well as erectile dysfunction (possibly caused by a lack of responsiveness and sensitivity)? While acknowledging that there are multiple, varied and complex causes of both issues, it seems unlikely to me that the one product could improve conditions that are at the opposite ends of the spectrum of male sexual performance.

Another thing to note from their website is that there are no claims of ‘fixing’ or ‘curing’ either of these conditions, only the ‘treatment’ of the conditions – a more ambiguous term that I’m sure was carefully chosen to help protect them from ACCC scrutiny.

Another question to ask is whether they they trying to fix a problem that doesn’t actually exist. Medical history is filled with examples of the medical world creating a problem in the minds of patients and then selling the ‘remedy’. Is this just another example? While there is an argument that erectile dysfunction is largely a natural part of the natural aging process, it is understandable that many men may want some help to retain their youthful virility. So perhaps addressing this issue is validly meeting a pre-existing market, even though blood thinning drugs such as Viagra would seem to have an established track record. But with regards to premature ejaculation, why would finishing in a timely manner be bad from an evolutionary standpoint? Could it perhaps be an advantage by giving you the opportunity and energy to procreate more frequently, with more partners?

AMI’s advertising relies on making men feel inadequate, by showing the disappointment from female partners who are supposedly left unsatisfied from their partner finishing ‘too early’. From my experience, most women need manual stimulation to finish off anyway, so except in severe cases, lasting longer is not necessarily an advantage. I am yet to meet or or even hear of a woman who enjoys endless banging away.

I can’t find any evidence to suggest that AMI’s oral strip actually works in successfully treating any of the real or ‘created’ issues it claims to treat. In fairness to the company, I also haven’t found any evidence that it doesn’t work, apart from my own suspicions and looking at their products with a common sense perspetive. My personal conclusion is that the best approach it to satisfy your partner with what you have, using any mutually loving methods you can think of, rather than allowing a company such as AMI to artificially create insecurities in your own mind.

Image courtesy of Ambro at FreeDigitalPhotos.net