The Centre for Disease Control and Prevention has listed a total of twelve common symptoms which can show that a person might have the coronavirus infection. These include signs such as coughing, sneezing, sore throat, gastrointestinal issues such as diarrhea, and many more. However, a report which appears in the American Journal of Emergency Medicine shows a new coronavirus symptom found by the doctors handling coronavirus patients in France.
According to the report, which was authored by a team of researchers from the Centre Hospitalier de Versailles in Le Chesnay near Paris, France, a man who had been reportedly diagnosed with severe coronavirus infection had a four hours long erection due to it.
Any person familiar with penile health is aware that erections that can last that long can hint underlying issues and can actually cause damage if not treated on time. A prolonged erection is called ‘priapism’ in medical terminology and it can occur due to two reasons.
In ischemic priapism, the blood flow of the affected person is restricted and blood is unable to leave the penis like it normally does. On the other hand, patients may also get a prolonged erection due to problems in blood flow into the penis in non-ischemic priapism.
For good penile health, blood regulation should be maintained. It is important for the blood to flow into the penis as well as outside it so that it can help in appropriate oxygen supply to the organ. This is why ischemic priapism is usually considered a medical emergency that requires immediate medical attention as an erection for a prolonged period of time can be harmful and even result in tissue damage.
In the case of the man who had a four-hour-long erection along with coronavirus, the doctors were unaware of the erection before conducting a physical examination. Initially, the man came to the hospital with a complaint of having a fever and fatigue. A few days later, he had to be hospitalized and put on a ventilator due to extreme difficulty in breathing.
A CT scan of the man’s chest is what originally revealed that the man had contracted the coronavirus. The doctors performed a physical examination only after the diagnosis of COVID-19. So, they are not sure how long did the man has had an erection. After concluding that the man may potentially have priapism, the doctors used an ice pack, which usually relieves erections.
However, when the erection stayed for longer than four hours, the doctors decided to test blood from the penis. This is usually done by pricking the penis with a needle. The blood test results later showed that the man had ischemic priapism.
After additional testing, the doctors confirmed that the priapism occurred due to clotting in the body, a common complication associated with severe coronavirus infection. After fourteen days of intensive treatment and care, the man was finally able to leave the hospital and recover from the infection.
The case showed not only another unusual complication or a new coronavirus symptom but also that blood clotting may occur in people who have had no history of clotting before.