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Health A-Z

Medical Content Created by the Faculty of the
Harvard Medical School

Diagnosis

Your doctor usually can recognize balanitis immediately. Occasionally, a swab or scraping of skin may be examined under the microscope, or may be sent to the laboratory for further testing to confirm the diagnosis.

When balanitis does not respond to treatment or appears different from a typical infection, your doctor may recommend that you see a dermatologist (skin specialist) or that a skin biopsy be done. In a biopsy, a small piece of skin is removed and examined in the laboratory. This is done to determine if you have an unusual type of infection or other type of skin condition that is causing your symptoms.

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From Health A-Z, Harvard Health Publications. Copyright 2007 by the President and Fellows of Harvard College. All rights reserved. Written permission is required to reproduce, in any manner, in whole or in part, the material contained herein. To make a reprint request, contact Harvard Health Publications. Used with permission of StayWell.

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