Acquired: pertaining to a condition that is not inherited; that is, there was a time when condition was not present.

Alprostadi: a drug that causes blood vessel dilation and is used to treat erectile dysfunction.

Amino acid: type of chemical that is important for the functioning or cells in the body: Some may produce by the body, but others must consumed in the diet.

Anti-inflammatory agents: drugs that reduce inflammation and its effects.

Antibody: protein produced in a controlled manner by certain white blood cells (lymphocytes) to neutralize an antigen or foreign protein and fight disease. but whose uncontrolled production can cause illness; immunoglobulin.

Antioxidant: chemical that neutralizes damaging effects of certain other chemicals; some antioxidants occur naturally in the body; others are nutrients that come from food.

Atrophy: the wasting away of body tissue.

Autoimmune: a response of one’s own body against something in the body.

Benign fibrosis: a noncancerous scarring process.

Beta-Blockers: drugs that relieve stress on the heart by “blocking” the stimulating effect of adrenaline.

Blinded study: clinical trial in which the patient does not know (is blinded as to) whether they are receiving the product being tested or the control/placebo to ensure that the results of a study are not affected by a possible placebo effect (by the power of suggestion).

Buckling: bending that occurs when pressure is applied; also, called hinge effect.

Calcification: process in which a tissue becomes hardened.

Calcified: physical state in which tissue has become hardened.

Cavernosal tissue: spongy, vascular tissue within the penis that fills with blood and expands the outer jacket tissue known as the tunica albuginea.

Chelation: the act of drawing substances out of the body through urination or defecation.

Chordee: congenital curvature of the penis.

Circumferential: all the way around.

Colchicine: medication for acute gout. In acute gout, there is a marked inflammatory response to the presence of uric acid crystals, causing severe pain, redness and swelling of the affected joint(s). Colchicine is useful in suppressing the inflammation (arthritis) in acute gout.  It is also sometimes used in the treatment of Peyronie’s disease.

Collage: protein that is normally part of many tissues in the body (like skin, tendons, cartilage, bone, and connective tissue) and provides structural support.

Collagenase: type of protein that breaks down collagen.

Combination therapy: the combination of various treatment methods.

Controlled trials: studies in which a placebo is used in comparison to a new drug.

Corpora cavernosa:  (singular = corpus cavemosum) paired erectile cylinders in the penis.

Congenital: pertaining to a condition that is present at birth.

Congenital penile curvature: condition of the penis where men have had curving of their penis all their life. The commonest direction of curvature in men with the congenital variety is in a downward (ventral) direction.

Corpus spongiosum: one of three chambers of the penis; it houses the urethra and takes no part in penile erection.

Cystoscope: an instrument used to view the urethra and bladder.

Cystoscopy: a procedure performed to view the interior of the bladder.

Cytokines: chemicals found within scar tissue which can activate and cause ongoing scarring. The most important cytokines stimulating scar formation are TGF-beta (transformation growth factor) and FGF (fibroblast growth factor).

Deformity: an abnormal irregular shape.

Degree of curvature: amount of bend in the penis; the greater the degree of curvature, the greater the bend.

Detumescence: loss of the erection.

Dupuytren’s contracture:  a condition marked by the shortening of the tendons within the palm of the hand, resulting in the inability to straighten the finger.

Dysmorphic calcification: abnormal bone formation.

Dorsal: curvature upwards

Edema: swelling caused by excess fluid in body tissues.

Ejaculation: ejection of semen during male orgasm.

Elastin: a protein that allows tissue to stretch.

Erectile Dysfunction (ED): the term commonly used for impotence or diminished erectile rigidity. Most commonly due to organic and vascular causes but can also be due to psychogenic inhibition.

Erectile tissue: smooth muscle that fills up with blood during an erection.​

Enzyme: substance produced in the body that helps chemical processes occur.

ESWT: extracorporeal shock wave therapy; noninvasive therapy using low energy shock waves focused into the Peyronie’s disease plaque. It employs the aid of ultrasound imaging and travels through the tissues (theoretically without damage).

Excision: the surgical removal of skin or tissue.

Extracorporeal: from outside the body.

Fascia Jata: the connective tissue surrounding muscles.

Fibrosis: scarring that can occur anywhere in the body. Cavernosal fibrosis is a scarring of the spongy, vascular tissue, tunica fibrosis and may be due to trauma or, if excessive, would be consistent with Peyronie’s disease.

Fibrosarcoma: a rare penile cancer.

Flaccid: the soft state of the penis when it is not erect.

Glans: the head of the penis.

Graft: a piece of tissue that is transferred from one place to another and does not contain its own blood   supply.

Girth: distance around an object.

Gout: condition that involves build-up of crystals, usually in the joints.

Hematoma: Abnormal localized correction of blood in which the blood is usually clotted or partially clotted and is usually situated an organ or soft tissue space, such a muscle.

Hinging/hinge-effect: equivalent to buckling, which occurs due to hourglass or substantial indentation resulting in destabilization of the shaft of the penis, which will tend to fold over during penetrative sex.

Hourglass deformity: penile configuration taking on the shape of an hourglass which causes a narrowing of the shaft and may result in a hinge-effect, or buckling, of the penis due to instability most commonly experienced during penetration. The penis will tend to fold or buckle in the hourglass as the column strength of the penis is compromised at the hourglass.

Interferon: a form of a biological modifier, which can change the behavior of the tissues into which it is   administered.

Intralesional Injection Therapy: the process of injecting a drug into the scar tissue to change the scar into softer more elastic tissue.

Inflammation: process by which the body responds to infection or injury; it may involve redness, warmth, swelling, and pain.

Interferon: proteins that occur naturally in the body and help regulate processes in the immune system.

Iontophoresis: also, known as Electromotive Drug Administration, this is the introduction of a drug through the skin using an electric current.

Lesion: specific area of scarring or abnormality; in Peyronie’s disease, plaques are sometimes called lesions.

Lithotripsy: procedure that uses ultrasonic shock waves to break up stones in the urinary tract so their fragments can be passed.

Natural history: the progression of a disease if it is left untreated.

Nitric oxide: a chemical that is released by the penile nerves because of sexual stimulation.

Nonoilxpansile: not stretchy.

Oral erection drugs: agents that are used to stimulate anti to improve penile blood flow. These drugs, including Viagra, Levitra, and Cialis, are also known as phosphodiesterase type 5 inhibitors.

They block a chemical, found primarily within the penis that breaks down another chemical made by the nerves ‘f-d blood vessels of the penis in response to sexual stimulation. This chemical, known as cyclic GMP, is necessary for penile vascular dilation. Therefore, these oral erection medications are designed to preserve cyclic GMP and thereby increase penile blood flow, making for better and prolonged erections.

Peyronie’s Disease (PD): a scarring disorder involving the tunica albuginea resulting in penile deformity including: curvature, indentation, instability, and shortening. In the early phase, PD can be associated with painful erections and is frequently associated with erectile dysfunction.         

Phosphodiesterase (PDE5) inhibitors: oral erection drugs.

Placebo: a nonactive substitute for an active drug. Placebos are frequently used when comparing an active drug in clinical trials to determine its efficacy as compared to a non-active drug.

Plaque: in the context of Peyronie’s disease, a plaque is equivalent to a scar. It is not like the plaques found within vascular tissue, which has a substantial cholesterol component.  

Plication: taking tucks in a structure to shorten it.

Palliative: treatment that helps manage symptoms but does not cure a disease.

Penile fracture: condition resulting from abrupt blunt trauma to the penis. A tear in the tunica albuginea.

Penis: Male sexual organ composed of 3 chambers. one, the corpus spongiosum, which houses the urethra and takes no part in penile erection. The other 2 chambers, the corpora cavernosa (singular = corpus cavemosum) are composed of 2 types of tissue. The inner tissue is the erectile tissue (smooth muscle) that fills up with blood during an erection. The outer tissue, the tunica albuginea is a dense tissue composed mainly of collagen, without many blood vessels.  It is this tissue that undergoes the scarring process that occurs in Peyronie’s disease.

Pentoxifylline: (brand name Trental) medication that decreases the “stickiness” (viscosity) of blood and thereby improves its flow. Placebo: “sugar pill” or any dummy medication or treatment.

Potaba: antifibrotic medication used to treat certain skin conditions. Potaba may also be used to treat other conditions.

Prostate: muscular, walnut-sized gland located at the bottom of the bladder within the lower abdomen; it produces some of the components of semen.

Prosthesis: a device placed within the penis to correct erectile dysfunction.

Research, clinical:(clinical trial) study of a treatment, procedure, or medication done in a medical setting.

Radical retropubic prostatectomy: a surgical procedure in which the prostate is removed.

Scarring: process that is sometimes called termed “fibrosis.”

Scrotum: the sac that holds the testicles, epididymes, and associated structures.

Temporalis fascia: a thick, flat piece of tissue found under the skin behind the ear.

Topical: pertaining to a medication that is applied to an area of skin.

Traction: process that involves applying a pulling force.

Tumescent: state of firmness of the penis in which there may be heaviness or extension of the penis, but the penis is not fully erect.

Tunica albuginea: the fibrous multilayered jacket tissue around the cavernosal vascular tissue of the penis. The tunica is naturally thicker on the top, or dorsal, surface of the penis than on the sides, and is thinnest on the undersurface, or ventral, side of the penis.

Tunica vagioa1is: a layer of relatively nonelastic tissue surrounding the testicle that can be used in grafting operations.

Urethra: the urinary tube extending from the bladder out to the tip of the penis where the urine and seminal fluid emerge. The urethra does not develop Peyronie’s Disease.

Ultrasound: imaging technique that uses sound waves tissues inside the body; it can be used to help physicians make a diagnosis.

Vasodilation:  blood vessel engorgement.

Ventral:  curves downward.

Verapamil: a drug that is a calcium channel blocker that is used in the treatment of Peyronie’s disease.

Venous leak: a condition in which blood is not being properly trapped and will run out the penis, preventing a full erection. A Peyronie’s plaque may alter the function of the venous system which can cause erectile dysfunction in men with Peyronie’s disease.

Vitamin E: (alpha-tocopherol) an antioxidant vitamin which binds oxygen free radicals that can cause tissue damage.

White blood cell: type of cell in the immune system that helps the body fight infection.