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Think Twice About Getting Your Dick Whitened

The good, the bad and the ugly things we learned about our bodies this week

It’s 3 a.m. You’re tossing and turning, and nothing you try is helping you get back to sleep — not when you’ve got that persistent hum in the recesses of your brain, that niggling thought that won’t go away: Your dick could be whiter.

That is, ever since you read on the internet that, in Thailand, doctors are performing the laser treatment on as many as three or four patients a day. It only costs $650 and can be done in just five sessions. Too good to be true!

But don’t buy your plane ticket just yet, because there’s more to this package than meets the eye. Since the story broke in western media last week, it’s received a lot of curiosity — mainly on Twitter, where it’s being lmao’d into oblivion — but also scrutiny from doctors, and it’s the latter group that doesn’t think it’s that funny. Not when penis whitening might have drastic consequences: Thailand’s Public Health Ministry has gone as far as to put out an official warning to consumers about the potential side effects of the procedure, such as scarring, disfigurement, loss of sex drive and permanent infertility. Yikes.

Not all doctors are convinced, though; New York-based plastic surgeon David Schaefer told Newsweek that he disagrees with Thai officials about the risks. “I think they’re just making claims that may not be founded,” Schaefer said. “I don’t see how doing a laser externally would change anything internally.”

So if the dream of having a really, really white dick is keeping you up at night, flights from the West Coast start at around $390.

A few other things we learned about our bodies today: