Should Men Worry About Dry Orgasms?
According to conventional definition, orgasm in men is often considered synonymous to ejaculation of semen, which technically makes it a wet orgasm; but it is a not a golden rule. Dry orgasm refers to sexual climax (marked by intense feeling of pleasure), with very little to no discharge of semen.
Dry orgasms are not dangerous or hazardous for health. In fact, occasional dry orgasms are fairly normal and usually do not interferes with the sexual pleasure or quality of sex life.
Physiological Causes Of Dry Orgasms:
Here are some common physiological causes of occasional dry orgasms:
- Repeated orgasm: Multiple orgasms during a single session of sexual intercourse can lead to dry orgasm at the time of climax due to complete utilization of semen and sperm (1). This is not a serious issue and in most cases, the issue resolves spontaneously with proper rest. According to a new study reported in the Sexual Medicine Reviews, the prevalence of multiorgasm is 10% in males under 20 years of age and about 7% in males over the age of 30 years (1).
- Voluntary control of Ejaculation: Some males can train themselves to achieve orgasm without ejaculation. For example, clinical data indicates that men who perform kegel exercise achieve superior control over prostate tissue and pelvic floor muscles. This render these men the capability to achieve orgasm without ejaculation (dry orgasms). Other methods include, applying pressure on the skin between anus and testicles and applying pressure on the penis directly (squeezing motion) can also lead to dry orgasms.
- Fatigue: Chronic insomnia or extreme fatigue can also lead to dry orgasm.
- Pharmacological regimen: Sometimes, when dry orgasms are due to a particular drug regimen or medication, switching to an alternative drug can resolve the issue. Some years ago, scientists also developed a male contraceptive drug (a combination of phenoxybenzamine and thioridazine as active agent) to reduce the intensity of tubular contractions.
- Surgeries involving genital organs: Dry orgasms are very common after prostate surgeries (especially radical prostatectomy for the management of prostate cancer) and/ or dissection of inguinal lymph nodes (2). Other surgical interventions involving inguinal region such as cystectomy or removal of urinary bladder, transurethral incision of the prostate (TUIP), surgeries of spinal cord, transurethral resection of the prostate (TURP), and transurethral microwave therapy (TUMT) may also culminates in dry orgasms.
- Retrograde ejaculation (RE): In this urinary condition, semen enters the urinary bladder instead of being ejaculated to the exterior during sexual climax. RE is a recognized adverse effect of some prostatic surgeries, pharmacological therapies (especially anti-hypertensive agents) and some medical conditions as suggested by a study reported in the British Journal of Urology International (3).
- Congenital anomalies of genital organs: Some males are inherently unable to produce sufficient quantities of semen due to congenital defects of genital organs.
- Malignant lesions of gut: According to a new study reported in the Translational Andrology and Urology, the risk of dry orgasms is much higher after the treatment of certain malignant lesions of gut or inguinal region (such as colon, rectum, prostate, urinary bladder etc.)
Other less common causes of dry orgasm include; radiation therapy, diabetic hypoglycemia, multiple sclerosis, male hypogonadism (or deficiency of testosterone), prolapse of urinary bladder and obstruction of ejaculatory duct.
It is imperative to mention that men with dry orgasms should still practice safe sex (such as physical barriers like condoms) to prevent unwanted pregnancy or transmission of sexually transmitted diseases.
Adverse Effects Or Hazards Of Dry Orgasms
Adverse effects of dry orgasms are:
- An inability or delay in impregnating the partner: It is quite likely that the amount of semen is small (or unnoticeable) and so pregnancy is still possible. A number of interventions can be sought in case of complete absence of ejaculate. For example, in case of retrograde ejaculation, viable sperms can be
- Emotional or psychological agitation: Most men feels extremely disturbed or agitated if they are unable to ejaculate (regardless of the quality of sex or orgasms). In extremely anxious males, this may affect the sex life and relationships.
If dry orgasms are not interfering with your sexual life, no treatment is needed; however, if it is affecting your fertility or relationship, speak to a primary care provider to learn more about the possible treatment options.
1. Wibowo, E., & Wassersug, R. J. (2016). Multiple Orgasms in Men—What We Know So Far. Sexual Medicine Reviews, 4(2), 136-148.
2. Schover, L. R. (2015). Sexual Healing in Patients with Prostate Cancer on Hormone Therapy. American Society of Clinical Oncology.
3. Sturch, P., Woo, H. H., McNicholas, T., & Muir, G. (2015). Ejaculatory dysfunction after treatment for lower urinary tract symptoms: retrograde ejaculation or retrograde thinking. BJU Int, 115(2), 186-187.
4. Zhou, E. S., Nekhlyudov, L., & Bober, S. L. (2014). The primary health care physician and the cancer patient: tips and strategies for managing sexual health. Translational Andrology and Urology, 4(2), 218-231.