Can Testosterone Enlarge Your Clitoris?

The clitoris provides sexual pleasure when aroused during intercourse or masturbation. Your clitoris becomes slightly enlarged when stimulated and typically returns to its normal size after the sensation has passed. In some cases, an enlarged clitoris may result from hormonal imbalance. For example, you may be born with a naturally high level of testosterone, or you can increase your testosterone through hormone therapy.

What is a clitoris?

The clitoris is found on the top of your vulva. On the outside, it resembles a small button-shaped area of skin. However, it is made of a much larger system of tissues and nerve endings inside and outside your body. This area in your vagina makes you feel sexually aroused during sex or masturbation. The clitoris, in particular, can give you the most stimulation — its entire purpose is to provide sexual pleasure.

During sexual arousal, blood flows to your genital area, causing your clitoris to become erect and stimulated. This results in an enlarged clitoris during intercourse. Once the clitoris is no longer stimulated, it reverts to its normal size. For some people, it may remain enlarged for a short period after.

Is clitoral enlargement common?

Having an enlarged clitoris is known as clitoromegaly. Some people are born with an enlarged clitoris, while others develop it over time. Studies show that exposure to a high level of androgen, a hormone in those designated males at birth, can influence the development of an enlarged clitoris.

What to do if you have an enlarged clitoris

If you are concerned that you may have an enlarged clitoris, speak to your healthcare provider. Pay attention to any tenderness, pain, or discomfort in this area. Treatment for a hormone-related case of an enlarged clitoris may result in taking hormone therapy.

In other cases, surgery can reduce the size of your clitoris and how far it protrudes. This procedure is called clitoropexy or clitoroplasty. As with all surgeries, keep in mind that there are risks involved.

Side effects may include a lack of stimulation to your clitoris and decreased sexual pleasure. Consult your doctor for the appropriate treatment regarding your specific condition.

Can testosterone cause the clitoris to enlarge?

Yes, an increase in testosterone can directly affect the size (it can become larger) and function of the clitoris. Testosterone is a type of androgen sex hormone. It is associated with males, which regulate fertility, produced in the testicles. Women also produce testosterone but on a much smaller scale.

Women with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) often experience a high testosterone level. This can result in acne, excess body hair growth, and infertility.

How big will my clitoris get when I take testosterone?

With increased testosterone, either natural or through treatment, your clitoris can swell to an abnormal size. If you notice the growth in the size of your clitoris and if the swelling does not decrease over a few days, contact your local health provider for further diagnosis and treatment plan.

In addition, in rare cases, children designated female-at-birth with too much androgen during pregnancy may develop a clitoris resembling a penis as they grow. This is called congenital adrenal hyperplasia (CAH).

Will testosterone change my sexual function?

Hormone replacement therapy, specifically testosterone, can be administered in certain cases. This may be an option for those experiencing menopause, postmenopausal, or a decrease in sex drive.

Keep in mind that testosterone therapy is not currently approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for women. Additional studies and resources are needed to gather more information.

At this time, testosterone therapy is not a common method to treat sexual dysfunction. Despite this, you can still find creams, patches, pills, and gels to administer testosterone therapy.

The long-term safety concerns of testosterone therapy use and its effect on sexual function are still in question. It is not entirely understood by scholars or medical professionals at this time. If you are considering hormone therapy, please consult your doctor before starting any treatment.

What is bottom growth?

“Bottom growth” refers to the growth of the clitoris and clitoris hood. The clitoral hood is an area of flesh that covers the clitoris along the upper part of your labia. It protects your clitoris from overstimulation, such as rubbing against your underwear.

Gender affirmation surgery involves the use of bottom growth. For those undergoing a female-to-male physical transition, surgeons often use the growth of an enlarged clitoris to form a micropenis — called metoidioplasty. One study has shown that 2% of transmen in the United States have already had metoidioplasty.

Common procedural details may include:

  • Physical exams (pre-surgery) to assess your medical history and general health;
  • Mental health evaluations (pre-surgery) to determine your well-being and how this surgery will affect your life going forward;
  • Hormone therapy for a year or longer;
  • Follow-up surgeries may be needed, depending on your situation;
  • Allow time to heal, possibly 3–6 months after your initial procedure.
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