Dear Dr. G,

I am a 25-year-old average Joe who is having some inferior complex about my male asset below the waist. I am hoping you can help me?

I recently went out with this girl, who previously had a Caucasian boyfriend. When things started getting a bit intimate, she began to make comments about the size of my manhood. Initially, I thought it was some kind of a joke. As she continued to make comparisons with her ex-boyfriends, and mentioning how size matters to women, I began to feel unhappy and self-conscious!

Needless to say, the relationship didn’t last long and we split up. In fact, we didn’t even manage to start a sexual relationship!

As my ego is badly dented, I am putting Dr. G on the spot for the serious issues of the size of “prized asset” in the pants. What is the normal size of an adult male penis? How exactly are these measurements taken?

Just in case, I have been short-changed (I am not saying I am), how important is the size of the penis in satisfying their partners? If so, whether the length or the girth of the penis is more important?

Lastly, any evidence to suggest that some ethnicity are more blessed than others when it comes to the most prized asset for men? Are Asian men generally compromised in their asset below the waist (You know I am not referring to the wallet!)?

Yours truly,
(Presumed) Compromised Colin

Data on the sizes of male penis across many countries has been published over the last few decades, for the purpose of condom manufacturers and general knowledge. As the natural size of the penis is quite variable on the same individual, depending on the state of arousal, time of the day, room temperature and frequency of sex, the standardisation of the method of measurement is crucial for fair comparison.

The standard method of sizing up the penis is to use a tape measure, pressing into the pre-pubic fat pad at the base at pubic bone, and measure the length to the tip of the penis. The length is generally reported in three different state of the organ being flaccid, stretched and erect. On the other hand, the girth is sized up, when the tape measure being wrapped around the widest part of the penis. The reported findings vary significantly, depending on self-measurement or data obtained by health professionals. Needless to say, the self-measurement reported a significantly higher average, compared to the latter.

Although the data is quite variable, the consensus is that mean human penis at the state of erection is in the range of 12.9cm to 15cm. In 2015, a systemic review of 15,521 men over three decades of measurements by healthcare staff has the best data to date on the topic today. The recorded mean flaccid penis is 9.16cm and mean stretched non-erect penis is 13.24cm. As the flaccid state is a poor predictor of erect length, the more important mean erect penis is 13.12cm, while the average erect circumference is 11.66cm.

The general belief that penile size varies according to race is supported by some data and yet disputed by other publications. A study of 115 men from Nigeria found the average erect penis also to be 13.12cm. As most of such studies are published from Western and African Nations, not many Asian data are available. A Korean study revealed average erect length to be 12.70cm and another Indian study reported 13.01cm of erect penises. Therefore, the 2015 systemic review found it impossible to draw any conclusion about the correlation of penile size and race from the available literature.

Multiple studies have overall findings that women are not so hung up about the size of male genitalia, as their partners. In a survey of 1,500 women on male body image, most of the participants were not concerned with penile size and 71% reckons men over emphasise on the issue. There is no robust scientific data to demonstrate the association of penile size and partners’ sexual pleasure, as it is difficult to conduct such study with willing partners.

While studies are showing no correlation between penile length and girth, with female sexual satisfaction, a small study from Texas revealing 50 undergraduate women on sexual satisfaction concluded that width of a penis feels better than the length, and penile size had overall effect on sexual satisfaction. Another study examining 375 sexually active women from Groningen University hospital, demonstrated 21% of women felt length was important, while 32% focuses on the girth.

The famous Indian film actress, Ileana D’ Cruz once said: “Love yourself for who you are, and trust me, if you are happy from within, you are the most beautiful person. And your smile is your best asset!” The perception of having a large penis is undoubtedly linked to higher self-esteem and confidence. Men with low self-confidence are known to underestimate their own penile sizes, leading to self-perception of being short-changed. When Dr. G is constantly put on the spot by “self-compromised” men about their prized asset in the groin, his response is “Love yourself for who you are, if your are happy from within the pants, you can be the most beautiful person. If you are truly short-changed in the pants, trust me your smile may just be your only asset!”

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