Priapism Persistent Erection


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Priapism is a persistent, usually painful, erection which it is not connected to sexual arousal.

If you ever had an erection that lasted for an unusually long period of time and it was not a consequence of sexual arousal or an overdose of pills for treating erectile dysfunction, then it is completely possible that you were suffering from priapism. In this case it is best to seek medical help as soon as possible. If you think it is embarrassing to come to the hospital with an erection in your pants, not treating the condition can cause serious and permanent consequences. Priapism is caused by the blood detained in the penis and the physical cause of priapism is an obstruction in the circulation of blood.

What causes priapism?
The causes for development of priapism are different. Some of them are:
- penile injections for treating erectile dysfunction can cause priapism if they are used for a long-period of time
- physical injury of the penis or the area around it;
- various diseases, which cause blood thickening, for example leukemia or one of the types of anemia;
- uterine cancer;
- neurological causes, for example spinal cord injury;
- certain infections, for example malaria;
- drug abuse, for example cocaine, marijuana and ecstasy;
- in some cases the cause is unknown.

How is priapism treated?
If you have an erection for more than four hours and it is not connected to sexual arousal in any way or if the erection is present for an unusual period of time after the sexual arousal, you should immediately seek the help of a doctor. The erection can be eased with ice compresses and walking upstairs. Treatment with various medications is also effective. If the medications do not work, priapism can be treated with a surgical procedure called artery ligation. During the procedure, they suck out the extra blood that is detained in the fungous tissue in the penis by using a needle. Blood circulation is restored with needles or scalpel. Priapism is not a life-threatening condition but it is nevertheless still advisable to seek doctor's help as soon as possible. Because as we said, permanent consequences can arise, and one of them is also a permanent erectile dysfunction.