Men who cheat aren't just risking a broken relationship -- they could also break something that many would consider far more important.

Yes... that.

A new study finds that cheating men may have a higher risk of a broken penis, as if some cosmic force was handing down instant justice -- or, as my wife (and many other wives, no doubt) would simply say, "serves them right."

Researchers looked at 16 broken penises treated in the University of Maryland Hospital between 2004 and 2011, and found that half of the men involved admitted that they were engaged in the business of cheating when business went bad.

The researchers say it's (probably) not the act of cheating itself at work here -- it's the way people cheat: often rushed encounters in unusual places.

And when you rush at anything, you take risks... like trying to keep all your parts in position while scrunched up in a supply closet. One false move and -- CRUNCH (yes, there can even be a horrific sound to go along with the horrific agony) -- you're going to have some ‘splainin to do, both in the ER and later on at home.

But just because broken penis victims may have gotten what was coming to them doesn't change the fact that this is a very real and very serious injury -- and if you're a man, it can hurt just to read about it.

Technically a "penile fracture," a broken penis is a tear in the structure of the organ itself (despite the name, there's no "bone" in "boner") that can require surgery to correct.

It'll heal -- eventually -- but the painful memories will never fade.

(Side note: Don't Google phrases like "broken penis" or "penile fracture" unless you're ready to see some things you can never un-see. Trust me on this.)

So whether you're cheating or just engaging in some daring Kama Sutra sex with your spouse, the lead researcher behind the new study in the Journal of Sexual Medicine has a simple piece of advice.

"If you're having acrobatic sex...you do have to be careful," Dr. Andrew Kramer told My Health News Daily.

And you might want to keep this story away from your wife. Just in case. You don't want to give her any ideas.