In the struggle for body acceptance, more and more men are searching for ways to make their penis bigger.

As you can imagine, the methods are dangerous and (for the most part) ineffective. “Jelqing,” which involves pulling the penis from the base to head, like milking a cow, doesn’t work. Neither do pumps or pills—none of it makes a true difference in size.

Even so, some men are taking more drastic measures by going under the knife for suspensory ligament surgery, penile implants, or penis enlargement surgery.

How drastic are these measures? One Swedish man died from complications related to penis enlargement surgery, according to a case report published in the Journal of Forensic Sciences.

During penis enlargement surgery, surgeons cut the suspensory ligament, which runs from the pubic bone down the shaft of the penis. This allows the penis to dangle a bit further, giving the appearance of greater length when flaccid. Then, the surgeons use liposuction to transfer fat into the shaft, which increase the penis’s girth. 

Why penis enlargement surgery is risky

It’s not a common procedure, as the results aren’t all that impressive. But the risks are high, especially if the penis is subjected to elongation before the fat injection—which is likely what killed the otherwise healthy 30-year-old man undergoing the procedure, as experts Brita Zilg M.D., Ph.D., and Petra Råsten-Almqvist M.D., Ph.D. surmise in the report. (The patient’s name is withheld in the report.)

After the procedure, some of the fat injected into his penis ventured through his blood into his lungs, clogging small blood vessels and robbing the body of oxygen. The patient suffered near-sudden death by fat embolism—a condition when fat mucks up blood vessels and disrupts blood flow.

Still, the question remains: If the procedure was risky and probably wouldn’t have given him larger erections in the first place, then why bother?

How to feel more confident with your penis size

Like women, men battle with some crushing body-image insecurities. Dudes have a difficult time not seeing their penis as the ultimate sign of masculinity.

While you might not believe us, most women don’t give a damn about how big your penis is. In fact, if you get super anxious before having sex with someone new or have zero confidence in the sack because you’ve avoided sexual situations in fear of baring your manhood, that’s going to hurt you far more in the long run. Think about it: Have you ever stopped a sexual encounter mid-way because a woman’s boobs weren’t, y’know, perfect? (We really, really hope you say ‘No.’)

Point is: At the end of the day, the person you’re with is far less scrutinizing and way more accepting of your body than you are. (And if she’s not, then maybe show her the door.)

So let us reiterate something: It’s OK to have a small penis. (By the way, the average length is 5.1″, and the average woman’s vagina is 3-5″, so being really heavily endowed isn’t always a blessing). You can still have electrifying sex with a small penis, so long as you find what your partner likes, focus on clitoral stimulation, and have an eagerness to please (she’ll reciprocate).

So to recap, gentlemen: Don’t try to “stretch” your penis out. Don’t retreat to the bathroom to inflate your penis in a pump mid-foreplay. And don’t take drastic measures to cut, inject, or add anything in your penis. The risks are astronomically higher than the reward.