Ischemic Priapism: Causes, Signs, Treatment

Some cardiac pathologies have very characteristic, although not obvious, clinical manifestations, that can bring significant discomfort to our daily lives. This is especially true of men – socio-psychological layer, which is most susceptible to influence of various irreversible disorders associated with disorders of sexual function, which have mixed physiological and psychosomatic character.

It is precisely this category of ischemic priapism, violation that got its name in connection with ancient Greek myth about Priapa, fertility deity, possessing inexhaustible masculine power, whose penis was in state of constant erection.


Modern medicine isn`t fully investigated causes of this disease. Among known factors contributing to manifestation of ischemic priapism are following:

  • Occurrence of inflammatory processes in penis tissues.
  • Wrong lifestyle, bad habits presence, such as addiction to alcohol and nicotine, as well as hard drugs usage.
  • Cardiovascular diseases, in particular, pathologies associated with structural disorders of blood.
  • Pathologies of oncological origin.
  • Features of side effects of some medications, as well as their incorrect combination.
  • Lesions whose object is spinal cord.
  • Venereal diseases.

Thus, list of possible causes of such violation is quite wide, and requires most thorough diagnosis. It is important to remember, that only identification of primary source of lesion can help to completely eliminate painful symptoms. In no case can`t engage in self, which can lead to disastrous results.

Signs and manifestations

Symptomatology of disease is characterized by characteristic features, fundamental of which is permanent appearance of erection, often associated with painful sensations. In addition, defining properties of pathology are following points:

  • Erect penis isn`t associated with manifestation of sexual arousal.
  • Cavity of head at onset of erection isn`t filled with blood, tissues remain soft.
  • Blood filling of cavernous bodies of penis is fully present.
  • Level of blood pressure in cavity of the male genital organ increases significantly, which leads to its bending to abdominal area.
  • Prolonged arousal of penis is accompanied by painful sensations.
  • Erection has significant duration, doesn`t stop even after ejaculation.

Concomitant phenomena are very often blood stasis and tissue inflammation, which leads to possible development of gangrene.

Pathology features

Ischemic priapism, as a rule, is characterized by weak level of blood supply to penis. This feature, in turn, is reflected in dynamics and nature of disease course.

It is worth remembering, that painful symptoms develop quite slowly, and in early stages may not bring significant discomfort. Psychological characteristics of men are such, that they are more likely to ignore these, in their opinion, insignificant violations. But, one way or another, originating in body, disease will progress, especially if it is ignored.

Diagnosis and treatment

It is quite easy to diagnose course of ischemic priapism, based on indicated symptoms. But, often treatment situation is complicated by advanced stage of disease and its acute nature. Therefore, mapping of therapeutic measures in development of this pathology is very individual process, depending on many factors.

Nevertheless, method of conservative treatment is often used, consisting of:

  • Parenteral administration of non-narcotic analgesic drugs.
  • Measures to ensure parenteral detoxification in event of pathological arousal occurrence of penis due to intoxication processes.

In case of sufficient prompt detection of symptoms, puncture of cavernous body is recommended. Manipulation should be with special needle (19 gauge). After this sampling, analysis of blood composition is made and final diagnosis is determined on its basis.

If patient has applied for medical assistance at sufficiently late phase of pathology development, surgical solution will be best solution. It should be noted, that this operation is very painful and requires long recovery. Therefore, it would be more logical to seek professional help in timely manner, allowing to avoid cardinal events.

I'm a professional fitness instructor and nutritionist, runner, husband and father. I do my best in providing the right guidance when it comes to the grounds of sexual health, nutrition and common fitness.

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