What Causes An Enlarged Glans Clitoris?

One condition that we’re able to treat at Austin Urogynecology is clitoromegaly, or an enlarged clitoris. Clitoromegaly is when the clitoral body and clitoral glans become enlarged. When this happens, the clitoris can look phallic or penis-like. There are a handful of reasons why a woman might develop clitoromegaly, and fortunately there are treatment options available to minimize enlarged tissue.

The glans clitoris (also called the clitoral bulb) is the most exposed portion of the clitoris, located above the urethral opening. While it’s sensitive to touch, it doesn’t have as much erectile tissue as the rest of the clitoral body. The glans clitoris is different from the clitoral hood, which is where the inner vaginal lips meet the vulva. The clitoral hood can cover all or none of the clitoral glans, which varies in size and appearance from person to person.

There are several reasons why a patient might experience clitoromegaly. Some women are genetically predisposed to have an enlarged clitoris, and it can also be congenital. This usually happens if a woman was exposed to excess androgens in utero. Clitormegaly is also linked to testosterone replacement therapy, which more and more women are using to achieve hormonal balance. It is important to call out that clitoromegaly is more likely among patients taking a higher dosage of testosterone. The small risk of clitoromegaly shouldn’t be a reason to avoid hormone replacement therapy (HRT), as the benefits can outweigh the potential side effects and risks can be reduced with proper dosing.

We offer both clitoral glans reduction and clitoropexy as treatments for clitoromegaly, which can be combined to help patients achieve a more naturally-appearing clitoris. Clitoral glans reduction is the surgical reduction of the glans clitoris, whereas clitoropexy is the elevation of the clitoral body. This surgery address the drooping appearance of the clitoral body.

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