A coronavirus patient in France suffered a four-hour erection due to a blood clot that may have been triggered by the illness, doctors have warned.
An unidentified 62-year-old man from France suffered the painful condition while receiving care in hospital for a severe bout of the coronavirus.
His erection was caused by trapped blood in the penis, which was found to be full of blood clots when it was drained by medics.
Blood clotting, or thrombosis, has been reported as a dangerous complication in up to a third of coronavirus-infected patients.
When clots block arteries or veins, the blockages can trigger fatal heart attacks and strokes. They can also lead to pripiasm.
The patient left intensive care after spending two weeks on a ventilator, suggesting he has now recovered from Covid-19.
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Doctors at Centre Hospitalier de Versailles in Le Chesnay, an area near Paris, wrote about the man in The American Journal of Emergency Medicine.
They explained how blood clotting caused by Covid-19 has been extensively reported during the pandemic.
Normally, blood clotting occurs when someone injures themselves. The clot stops a wound, such as a paper cut, from bleeding.
Doctors’ don’t know yet why some Covid-19 patients suffer blood clotting.
An ice pack was applied to the penile area. After four hours of a persistent erection, doctors sucked out the blood from his penis using a needle. They found ‘dark blood clots’ which they said were the result of thrombosis induced by the coronavirus.
The doctors came to this conclusion because no other alternative cause of priapism was found and the virus is known to cause blood clotting complications.
They wrote: ‘Although the arguments supporting a causal link between COVID-19 and priapism are very strong in our case, reports of further cases would strengthen the evidence.
Priapism (painful erections)
According to NHS, things you can try yourself:
Priapism may get better on its own within 2 hours. There are things you can try to reduce your erection.
- try to go for a pee
- have a warm bath or shower
- drink lots of water
- go for a gentle walk
- try exercises, such as squats or running on the spot
- take painkillers like paracetamol if you need to
- do not apply ice packs or cold water to your penis – this can make things worse
- do not have sex or masturbate – it won’t make your erection go away
- do not drink alcohol
- do not smoke