Search icon


19th Jan 2022

Man’s agonising penis pain discovered as rare covid side effect

Steve Hopkins

An earlier study by the University College London revealed that covid had led to a reduction in penis size

A man’s agonising penis pain has been blamed on covid, with doctors saying the virus led to blood clotting.

The unnamed male suffered penile pain for three days before being seen by a urologist in Iran, having first experienced discomfort following an erection while having sex.

The case was highlighted in the journal Clinical Case Reports last month.

The 41-year-old married man told doctors he had not suffered any trauma to his pelvic area that might explain his symptom but had a positive PCR test three weeks prior to suffering the discomfort, radiologist Seyed Morteza Bagheri and a colleague from the Iran University of Medical Sciences, wrote in the journal.

Nothing was out of the ordinary about his covid illness, doctors noted. He had mild symptoms including fever, cough, and fatigue.

Tests later showed, however, that the man had “thrombosis of deep dorsal penile vein” – blood clotting in a vein that runs along the top of the shaft. The vein helps supply oxygenated blood to the organ.

An ultrasound showed “no [blood] flow in the vein” due to a clot around halfway along the penis so the man was given a blood-thinner to treat and prevent blood clots.

“Two months after starting the treatment, patient’s symptoms were completely disappeared and he had no penile pain during erection and sexual disturbances anymore,” the medics wrote.

However, the man still experienced a little pain at the site of the blood clotting.

“Roughly, 20 percent – 50 percent of hospitalized patients with COVID-19 infection have abnormal coagulation tests,” Morteza Bagheri wrote.

But he noted the blood clotting the man suffered was very rare and usually only occurs in people who have a blood clotting disorder.

“Searching the literature showed no previously published similar case of deep dorsal penile vein thrombosis following COVID-19 infection and our patient is the first reported case,” Morteza Bagheri said.

Thrombosis in another vein, the superficial dorsal penile vein, has been reported previously in men with covid, The Sun reported, noting also, that a bunch of other complications concerning the penis had been reported by doctors over the course of the pandemic including, in Ohio, where a 69-year-old man had suffered a three-hour erection.

A man last week claimed that catching covid had resulted in his penis shrinking by an inch-and-a-half – almost 4cms.

The anonymous male, who shared his story on the podcast “How to Do It”, said the lasting effect of the virus had damaged his self-confidence. Before catching coronavirus, the 30-something American said his penis was above average in size and doctors have said it won’t return to normal.

Urologists support the claim, saying the penis can reduce in size due to damage to blood vessels. A study by the University College London of 3,400 people found that of 200 that reported long-covid symptoms, a smaller penis was one.

Almost five per cent of men suffered a “decrease in size of testicles/penis”, according to the findings published in The Lancet’s EClinicalMedicine, and around 15 per cent reported sexual dysfunction.

Related links: