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According to 15,000 Penises, This Is the Average Penis Length

average penis length
<a href="http://www.shutterstock.com/gallery-1425959p1.html?cr=00&pl=edit-00">Pe3k</a> / Shutterstock

Everyone knows that size doesn't matter. But that doesn't stop men from believing that size totally matters, goddammit. That's why a new study may be of significant interest to a lot of men. It's a compendium of 20 studies on penis size, bringing together the phalluses of over 15,000 men to paint what the study hopes is the most accurate depiction of average size to date.

The 15,521 penises involved were all aged 17 years or older, and were measured by a health professional instead of in a bathroom around 2am with a wooden ruler from grade school. All of the penises measured were neither suffering from erectile dysfunction nor the penises of men who complained of a small penis.

The big reveal was that the mean length of a flaccid penis is around 3.6 inches, while the mean length of an erect penis is 5.16 inches. In terms of girth, it's 3.7 inches flaccid and 4.6 inches when erect. However, fewer measurements were available for erect penises versus flaccid ones in the studies used. 

While penis size is frequently joked about, it's also a source of great anxiety for many men. For some it may just by a nagging curiosity, but for others it can be more complex and sexually debilitating. The latter are frequently diagnosed with what is termed "small penis anxiety," and at its most extreme can become body dysmorphic disorder (BDD). The study notes that "the diagnosis of BDD or small penis anxiety excludes 2.28% of the male population who are abnormally small as less than [two] standard deviations below the mean."

The study also notes that there is at best a "weak correlation" and at the other end no correlation at all between penis length and foot size, finger length, or testicle size, which should put the minds of politicians at ease.

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Dustin Nelson is a News Writer with Thrillist. He holds a Guinness World Record, but has never met the fingernail lady. He’s written for Sports Illustrated, Men’s Journal, The Rumpus, and other digital wonderlands. Follow him @dlukenelson.