Pseudoepitheliomatous keratotic and micaceous balanitis (PKMB) is a condition which occurs on the glans penis of older men and may be associated with the development of a verrucous carcinoma. A role for human papillomavirus (HPV) in the aetiology of verrucous carcinoma has been implicated and several different HPV types have been found. We report a 74-year-old man who developed a verrucous carcinoma within an area of PKMB on the glans penis. Using a broad-spectrum polymerase chain reaction technique for identifying HPV, the epidermis of the area of PKMB and of the verrucous carcinoma were examined and no HPV DNA was identifiable. These results suggest that there is no part for HPV in the pathogenesis of PKMB or its transformation to verrucous carcinoma.