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Nonspecific balanitis in Child
See also in: Anogenital
Other Resources UpToDate PubMed

Nonspecific balanitis in Child

See also in: Anogenital
Contributors: Craig N. Burkhart MD, Dean Morrell MD, Lowell A. Goldsmith MD, MPH
Other Resources UpToDate PubMed


Balanitis is inflammation of the glans penis. Balanoposthitis refers to inflammation of both the glans and foreskin in uncircumcised males. It is most commonly seen in toilet-trained, uncircumcised boys between the ages of 2 and 5. Most cases are caused by inadequate hygiene of the preputial-glanular sulcus. Exposure to urine, soaps, Candida, and bacterial overgrowth exacerbate the dermatitis. Most boys only have one episode.


N48.1 – Balanitis

44882003 – Balanitis

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Differential Diagnosis & Pitfalls

Group A beta-hemolytic streptococcal infection is the most common cause of acute inflammation of the glans penis in prepubescent children. Although it is usually associated with more intense pain, erythema, and discharge than nonspecific balanitis, the diseases may be clinically indistinguishable. Other signs that suggest streptococcal balanitis include the presence of perianal streptococcal cellulitis or a preceding throat infection.

Other diagnoses include the following:

Primary dermatoses Contact dermatoses / trauma

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Drug Reaction Data

Below is a list of drugs with literature evidence indicating an adverse association with this diagnosis. The list is continually updated through ongoing research and new medication approvals. Click on Citations to sort by number of citations or click on Medication to sort the medications alphabetically.

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Last Updated:09/10/2017
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Patient Information for Nonspecific balanitis in Child
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Contributors: Medical staff writer


Nonspecific balanitis is the inflammation of the head and foreskin of the penis. It is usually caused by the irritation of the penis under the foreskin from the growth of bacteria or yeast, but there are other possible causes.

Who’s At Risk

Uncircumcised men are at high risk for developing balanitis. Other factors that increase your risk are:
  • Diabetes mellitus
  • Obesity
  • Infrequent washing or over-washing of the glans
  • Sexual partner with vaginal thrush (yeast infection)
  • Chemical irritants such as lubricating jelly or medicated creams
  • Allergy to condom materials
  • Taking drugs that cause a reaction
  • Poor personal hygiene

Signs & Symptoms

You may experience itching, burning, pain, and tenderness. There may also be pain associated with urination.

Self-Care Guidelines

Keep the head of the foreskin clean and dry to prevent infections. Wash the head of the penis with warm water daily. Do not use soap as this may irritate the area. After washing, make sure to dry the area thoroughly.

When to Seek Medical Care

If your symptoms get worse or are persistent, see your health care provider.


Depending on what is causing the nonspecific balanitis, different treatments may be applied. Your health care provider may recommend a topical antifungal cream, a topical antiseptic cream, or a mild topical steroid.
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Nonspecific balanitis in Child
See also in: Anogenital
A medical illustration showing key findings of Nonspecific balanitis : Glans of penis, Skin erosion, Blanching patch
Copyright © 2023 VisualDx®. All rights reserved.