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Not sure what's happening here
IrieMan10 posted:
This is my first post, although I've been watching these boards for about a year now. I am a 39 year old male. I need to know if I should be seriously concerned about an issue I have and would appreciate some advice. For the past year and a half, about once per month, I have been awakened at night with a severe pain in my rectum. It feels as if something has been inserted deep into my rectum and is pushing hard against my prostate. It is very intense, so much so that when it comes on I am immediately awakened. Additionally, when this pain happens I have an extremely rigid erection (the kind I used to get when I was a younger man). The first few times it happened, I tried to sit on the toilet and either pass gas or have a BM, but was unsuccessful with either in relieving the pain and erection. One time, I decided to masturbate to see if ejaculating would cause the pain to go away, but that didn't help either and actually was quite uncomfortable in both stroking it and ejaculating. The pain will last between 10-20 minutes and then will just fade away. When the pain fades, the erection does too. I am then able to go back to sleep. I told my family doctor about these symptoms after about 6 episodes of this happening. She did a rectal exam to examine my prostate and said that everything felt fine. She decided that it was just gas pains and we left it at that. I'm not sure if that is the case because usually when I get gas pains, I have sharp pains in my lower abdomen and they are not persistent but rather shooting pains. Additionally, when this pain occurs in my rectum, on the occasion that I have been able to force myself to pass some gas, it doesn't relieve the pain. And if it were gas pains, why do I get such a rigid erection when this happens that won't go away until the pain subsides? Anyway, I'm starting to get more concerned since this continues to happen. Has anyone experienced anything like this before and have any ideas as to what may be the cause? I would appreciate any feedback.
IrieMan10 responded:
I was really hoping someone would have replied to this post. It happened again last night and I just don't understand what it is. Maybe it is gas pains. I don't know. It just seems odd to me that this is going on. Please, if anyone has ever experienced anything like this or has any advice as to what is going on, I would certainly appreciate your feedback.
Caprice_WebMD_Staff replied to IrieMan10's response:
Hi IrieMan,

It looks like you posted right around the time we launched these exchanges and I'm sorry your post was missed in all the confusion at the time.

Perhaps now that you've responded again and bumped the discussion up, others will have a chance to see it and respond.

Considering this continues to bother you, you may want to return to your doctor and insist on a referral to a urologist.
Sheldon Marks, MD responded:
I have heard of this before. This sounds more like a rectal wall muscle spasm than a urologic problem. Or it could be from a flare up of prostate or seminal vesicle inflammation or obstruction. Your primary care doctor just doing a rectal exam is of minimal value. I suggest you see a GI specialist for a more complete rectal and sigmoid colon evaluation. There are some medications that can help. A urologist can see you and you will probably need a rectal ultrasound of your prostate and seminal vesicles to look for signs of blockage. A urine culture and PSA are in order as well.
amr_4242 replied to Sheldon Marks, MD's response:
I can't say that my problem is this severe, but it is something I am concerned about. Several times a day at most, I get random erections, that last anywhere from 30 seconds to a couple minutes. For the most part, these erections just come up on me, they are not brought on by lustful images or thoughts or anything like that. This has been happening to me for a long time now, and it's really embarassing. Any thoughts on what it could be?

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