Average erect penis length has increased 24 percent globally

Scientists found that the average length of an erect penis has gone up from 4.8 inches to six inches in the last 29 years.
Rupendra Brahambhatt
Yellow tape measure stock image.
Yellow tape measure stock image.


A team of scientists reviewed 75 previously-published research works focusing on erect penis sizes. They found that the average length of an erect penis has gone up from 4.8 inches (12.19 cm) to six inches (15.24 cm) in the last 29 years.

The studies analyzed by the researchers involved 55,761 men in total and were published over a period of 80 years between 1942 and 2021.

After making some adjustments to their data with respect to the age, area, and population of the subjects, they discovered that globally, men have witnessed 24 percent growth in the average erect penile length between 1992 to 2021.

So is this good news or bad?

The dilemma of penis length

While the majority of sexual health experts suggest that penis size has no effect on a person’s reproductive health or fertility, there are a few controversial research works that hint that it is comparatively difficult to conceive a child with a penis smaller than a particular size. 

The authors of the current study also found no relation between penis size and men’s ability to procreate during their analysis. However, they wonder why erect penis length is increasing while other parameters linked to reproductive health, such as testosterone levels, sperm count, male fertility, and libido are following a negative trend.

“Given the trends we'd seen in other measures of men's reproductive health, we thought there could be a decline in penile length due to the same environmental exposures," told Michael Eisenberg, one of the study authors and a urologist at Stanford Health Care.

He further added, "We looked at flaccid, stretched, and erect lengths and created one large database of measurements. What we found was quite different from trends in other areas of male fertility and health.” 

Why is erect penis length increasing?

According to the researchers, the increase in penis length is a serious matter of concern because to this date, they have no clue as to why it is happening and how it is affecting the reproductive health of men globally. 

They are not sure, but perhaps the female reproductive organs might also be going through similar changes. Since our reproductive system is crucial for ensuring sustained human existence, it becomes important to address any change it goes through.

“Any overall change in development is concerning because our reproductive system is one of the most important pieces of human biology. If we're seeing this fast a change, it means that something powerful is happening to our bodies,” said Eisenberg.

The increase in penile length in men across the globe is also one of those changes. In men, the human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG) hormone (produced by the endocrine system’s pituitary gland) mainly controls penis length. 

The researchers assume that many external factors, such as lifestyle, diet, hygiene, and chemicals, act as endocrine-disrupting factors. For instance, some previous studies highlight that changes in environmental conditions and exposure to certain chemicals are decreasing puberty age in boys and girls. 

Similarly, it is possible some or all of these endocrine-disrupting factors are affecting HCG and driving the increase in erect penis length among men. However, this is still just an assumption, and more research is required to identify the exact factors causing this change.

The study authors plan to study many other groups and populations to further identify similar developments in their reproductive systems.

The systematic review is published in The World Journal of Men's Health.

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