Week 10 : Doctor phone call and 12mm

Week 10 : Doctor phone call and 12mm
May 14 2021

Last week I ended up at 10.6mm.

By Tuesday I got to 12mm using my 3D printed plugs. Also, I am very glad that I can now insert my pinky finger with some lubrication. I am extremely happy with this because I can now insert it enough to touch all around the inside of the mucosa and the glans. It is a strange feeling to touch your glans for the first time ever. But interestingly the ridged band (the part in between the inner mucosa and the outer skin of the foreskin) is really more sensitive than the glans itself. I am very glad I did go with this treatment instead of circumcision, the foreskin is certainly an important part of the penis sensitivity. I am also very relieved to know that I feel no strange bumps or adhesions and I also don't feel like I might have frenulum breve. This is great as it means the inside appears to be healthy and I should not have other issues than a tight foreskin.

I had a phone doctor's appointment scheduled for today. 10 minutes before the phone call, I went for a walk to pick up the mail so I can have some privacy for the call. I walked almost an hour waiting for that call. When I finally got the call, the doctor started by asking how it was going and I asked her how much time we had. I could have talked about my whole process and my 3D-printed improvisations for hours. She said it is booked at 45 minutes per call but that we take the time we take, that is why she was late on my call.

I decided to keep it a bit short and started with my emergency doctor visit because of some blood, the urine tests came back totally fine and I got no antibiotics prescribed. I told her I assumed it was a small tear and she said to really go extremely slow in the stretchings and to be careful because scar tissue shrinks the skin and causes inflammation and is harder to stretch once healed, so it is extremely important to not cause any tears.

Then I explained that the silicon rings did not work at all because of their huge rim and how they don't really fold smaller at the smaller sizes at least. I told her I used ear stretchers up to about 5mm and then switched to knitting needles because 1mm increments were too much and they had 0.5mm increments. Then I went on to explain that I could not continue with those because I don't want to damage my urethra, I needed something less pointy and shorter but that would not fall. I told her I got a 3D printer and printed my own custom plugs in 0.2mm increments (exactly to be able to progress slower and avoid those tears) and that I was now at 12mm but the plug keeps falling and I need to design something new, but it is going good so far and I was very happy. 

She congratulated me and she told me she honestly did not have much hope in the process but she is happy it worked and very surprised I was at 12mm. Then I told her the steroid cream really helped, I tried the process in the past and had to deal with a lot of inflammation which is not the case now with the Betaderm cream. I told her that I used my own judgment and continued using the cream a bit longer than the prescribed 6 weeks as I saw absolutely no side effects. I asked her what we do next if there was any good reason to stop the cream or she prescribes it again. I also told her I was using Eucerin cream and coconut oil alternatively in between stretches to not use the steroid cream more than twice or 3 times per day. She said it was fine to use general skincare products that are neutral and mostly moisturizers or natural lubricants or moisturizers as long as they don't appear to cause issues visually. As for the cream, the usual treatment that is scientifically documented is 6 weeks but that it was also for children, so we are in untested territory here. I told her that from what I saw online, adults doing stretching to cure their phimosis usually need multiple months, so I leave it up to her to decide if she feels comfortable renewing that prescription or if the side effects were too dangerous. She said she will renew it for another 4 weeks and told me to monitor for possible complications about it. To watch for irritation, thinning of the skin, decoloration of the skin, etc. She also said that after this round of another 4 weeks she would like an in-person appointment.

She then went on to my latest blood and urine test results. She said my micro-albumin levels lowered by a lot and are almost normal, the urine flow improvements were probably the cause for the urinary troubles, she wants to still keep monitoring that so gave me another prescription for new urine tests. As for the blood tests, it all looks fine but they forgot to test the cholesterol which was the main thing she wanted to know about. So I got another appointment for a new blood test too.

About 6 weeks ago, my parents decided it was time to stop smoking and because it's hard to stop smoking with others smoking around you, I followed them on that project. I have stopped smoking several times in the past without too much difficulty. This time is really a poor choice for me, I am under a lot of stress right now and I had planned to stop smoking after this summer and this treatment, but I followed and had some nicotine gum and patches. When I originally got the patches and gums, the pharmacist told me there was no problem using both, there was no problem cheating here and there and to simply continue with the current step if that happened. In the past, that would be a failure and one would restart at step 1. He also told me to ignore the weeks on each step and that it was for me to decide when to move on to step 2 and step 3 and when to completely stop the patches, he was great.

Wednesday I went to the drugstore to pick up my new cream (the current container is almost empty) and renew my patches. I got the worst pharmacists I ever had. I ordered Step 1 of the patches (I have been cheating half a cigarette here and there, like about 1 per day instead of 15 per day). For me, this is a great success considering the timing and all the stress I have right now. I was proud until I got there. The pharmacist opened my file and said it was a mistake I am now at step 2. I told him I had cheated a bit and still needed some time at step 1. He said I failed! I told him what the other pharmacist told me and felt I needed more time at step 1. He repeated it's not supposed to go that way and that I failed, so I asked him what I should do with a bit of frustration in my voice. He replied, well I don't know but you should not smoke if you are trying to stop smoking. So I told him, ok, disregard that and I'll just go buy a pack of smokes instead, is that the plan? He said, no but just letting you know that you failed and should not cheat. Anyway, he kind of got me pissed of on that one (and I am a bit easy to get pissed off because I am also trying to stop smoking). He gave me step 1 and moved on to the cream. The first time I got the cream 10 weeks ago, the pharmacist asked me what it was for so he has an idea of the quantity to give me and I just pointed my eyes down towards my groin and he took me aside to not talk about this in front of everyone. I just told him more privately it was for genitals and he did not ask more questions. So when I spoke with my doctor, I asked her to write the quantity on the prescription to avoid embarrassing questions in front of the other clients. So this time, the doctor wrote 60 grams EGO on the prescription. The pharmacist asked me loudly across the place "Hey, I see 60 grams EGO here, do you know what the doctor meant?". To which I replied, well I know what 60 grams are, but no clue on EGO. The very nice and smiling cashier (apparently she know more than the pharmacist) went to see him and silently said something to his ears for discretion (you know, as a pharmacist should be). The stupid pharmacist repeated loudly in the place "Ahhh External Genital Organs!". I seriously just wanted to jump over the counter and slap him. At any rate, I got my things and paid and left and cheated 2 cigarettes on the short way back home.

Back at home, I relaxed a bit and then thought I would give a try to the 12mm silicon ring. The previous sizes were totally unusable due to their folded size being bigger than their unfolded size. With the 12mm it looks a bit more usable now. I used the hand cream as a lubricant, it is really slippery (more than the steroid cream), plus I knew I might have to use a lot so did not want to spend too much of the precious substance. I wiped my fingers thoroughly to make sure they are not too slippery on the silicon ring. Then I folded the ring into a heart shape and tried to insert it multiple times without success. It would just slip out of my fingers and get full of lubricant and become even worst. I repeated the process of drying everything and trying again multiple times. I ended up asking my girlfriend to help. I told her to not touch anything but the ring, I lubed up and held my foreskin as far back as it would go without any discomfort and told her to try and insert it halfway and let it expand very slowly. It took about a half-hour to get that first part done after multiple attempts, then when it finally worked and she tried to slowly let it expand, the thing slipped from her tiny fingers and snapped open in a flash. After my initial jump of surprise, the silicon rib on the inside was really pushing too much on my mucosa, I was in serious pain. I waited about a minute to see if the pain was just from the snap or would continue and after that, all I wanted was to get it out. I wiped all the lubricant and tried to fold it back into a heart shape, obviously, if I had a hard time maintaining it in that shape while it was just in my hands, it was even harder to do now that it was inserted and I only had a tiny bit of grip on it. I once again asked my girlfriend for help, I held my foreskin back and she was trying to get it into the proper shape. Then we tried to simply pull it out, to turn it sideways, etc. No luck, the ring was totally stuck and I saw no way to get it out without pain. She found some assortment of eyebrow tweezers and after another half hour of trying, we finally got it out. As soon as the silicon ring got past its midpoint out of the orifice, it flew across the room literally. I was glad it was out, I went to find where it ended up and almost threw it out in the garbage can with anger. I calmed myself down and put it back into its little bag in case I later decide to try it again in a couple of days. I had a bit of blood and did not put any other stretching device for the night. I just washed with water and put some steroid cream for the night to try and reduce inflammation. This was not a great day, I am very pissed with everything that happened today and I simply can't get to sleep.

I went back to the computer to think. The rings simply won't work at smaller sizes, the ear stretchers and knitting needles are just shaped too pointy and there is no way to wear them without risking damaging the urethra or scratching my glans, and the new plugs I designed keep falling off at those larger sizes. I need something circular that I can compress in a way that it gets a much smaller circumference than when deployed. This thing will also need to be comfortable and not too long so I can wear them with clothes during the day. Finally, the overall mechanism needs to be printable and usable at 12mm and above. So I designed a new 3d-printed stretcher that is made of 3 rounded prongs like small fingers. Each prong ends up in a spherical wedge that is slightly larger than the rest of the stretcher to prevent it from falling off. I printed one size and barely tried it to see if the design worked out, it did. I took it out and let my foreskin heal for the night.

Thursday I had another trip to the big city. My foreskin was still feeling sore in the morning but I managed to do some light stretching using the steroid cream and only my pinky in the morning. A finger is certainly the best tool compared to them all, unfortunately right now I can only use a single pinky, so I won't be able to use that method to grow progressively until I can get 2 fingers in. My ring finger still does not fit, not even partially where I could use it to stretch progressively to it, so I still need some improvisation. I did not bring the new "sandworm" stretcher with me for the trip and I was not able to stretch all day until after dinner. I tried to get back to my 12mm size but I could not pass 10mm without pain, I quickly printed a 10mm of that new design for the first try and it was comfortable and stayed all night. But I was very frustrated about this week, I lost 2mm in a single day and 0.6mm overall for the week. I need to arrange things so that I can get 2 or 3 15 minutes sessions for myself each and every day. It is easy at home, I just have to fake some private meeting and close the office door, on the road it is a bit more complex, monopolizing a public gas station bathroom for 15 minutes is strange, and staying that long in the bathroom at a guest too.

Friday I still had the 10mm in the morning and the skin was feeling better, so during the day I printed 0.5mm increments of that new design and got progressively back to 12mm by night.

I guess the lesson to take from this week is to ignore any individual day progress and focus on the longer-term progress. I was disappointed and frustrated half of the days of this week but overall I managed to get from 10.6 to 12 which is more than 1mm progress (my average goal). All in all, not a bad week, my doctor is still with me on this process and I progressed on the stretching, that is all that counts.