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Science Says Your Penis Is a Fine Size, so Please Just Relax

A recent study sifted through nearly 100 previous studies and determined that the average erect dong is around five inches long, so you can stop worrying about that.

Via Flickr user Rob Friesel

Some scientists do extremely important work curing diseases, building machines that predict the weather, and inventing the internet. But not everyone is Alan Turing, and sometimes scientific inquiry goes in a direction you might find in a middle-school locker-room conversation.

For example, how big is a normal dong? There have been many, many attempts to answer this question (usually asked by nervous men), but the most ambitious to date has just been published by the British Journal of Urology.


It's called "Am I Normal?" and it is supposed to be a definitive answer on whether your dick is an OK size. The authors went through 96 full-text studies on the subject, excluded 70 for one reason or another—"penis size not measured" was one reason; "cadavers" was another—and synthesized and interpreted the data from the rest.

"One might hypothesize that men without any concerns about their penile size have 'rose-tinted glasses'," according to the study, which is an odd sentence for it to include, considering the fact that it's a direct product of almost 100 groups of people obsessing over the same concern.

The rationale behind this obsession over girth and length is that everyone will talk about it if you have a small dick. Sorry, the rationale is that men might develop body dysmorphic disorder if they become too preoccupied with how they stack up. The authors hoped to provide a graph for doctors to point to if their patients mistakenly think they have micropenises or are inadequate in some way.

The good news is that your cock is fine. Really, it's totally adequate. Apparently only 2.28 percent of men have an abnormally small appendage, with the average size being 5.6 inches when erect and 3.6 inches when flaccid. What's more, there's apparently no real correlation between penis size and height, weight, age, finger length, or basically anything else. To be clear, actual scientists with PhDs spent a significant amount of time analyzing the whole shoe-size myth so they could tell the world that—surprise!—that's not a thing that exists.


Although the sample populations were largely of European descent, some data was culled from scientists in countries like Nigeria, Jordan, and Korea. In creating the profile of the universal penis, the authors found that "It is not possible from the present meta-analysis to draw any conclusions about any differences in penile size across different races."

But while the study seems to promote a strange multicultural message of unity and hope for men across the world, it's going to make exactly 2.28 percent of them very upset. "Comparing one's self or one's attributes against others is a 'double-edged sword' and may confirm perceived inadequacy," the study notes.

The authors say the study will also help "investigate the relationship between condom failure and penile dimensions"—a decent enough cause. In fact, back in 2001, LifeStyles Condoms attempted basically the same thing, although that attempt sounded more like the plot of a really terrible porno than anything approaching science. During a Cancun Spring Break, the condom makers stood outside a club and invited 401 males into a tent to be measured with the goal of "designing a better condom." (Only 300 of them could get hard, for the record.)

"Using the figure of 5.877 inches from the LifeStyles Condoms Average Penis Size Survey it appears that men on average exaggerate their penis length by a quarter to a half an inch when they are permitted to measure and report their own size," LifeStyles found. "The results do show that the difference between small penises, average penis size, and large penises is not so great as folklore might have us believe."

And just before Valentine's Day this year, Thailand's Ministry of Public Health had to issue a warning to teens about the dangers of buying baggy condoms. Apparently, the kids there are too embarrassed to buy an appropriate size, which is causing an STD epidemic in the country. I guess reassuring dudes about their dicks could have positive real-world consequences? Though something tells me the type of guy who worries about his tiny penis isn't the type of guy who cares about scientific studies. Anyway, your dick is fine.

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