Ejaculation occurs when a man reaches sexual climax and semen is ejected from his penis. Premature ejaculation is:
Many men experience premature ejaculation at one time or another. For example, some men experience it after not having had sex for a long period of time. Premature ejaculation is only a problem when it becomes a persistent condition.
Ejaculation occurs automatically after a certain degree of sexual stimulation. Persistent premature ejaculation usually results from a man's inability to recognize that he is about to ejaculate. This inability prevents him from taking steps to delay the process.
Psychological factors may contribute to premature ejaculation. This may include difficulty in the relationship with a partner, guilt about sex, or fears related to sex.
In rare cases, premature ejaculation can be caused by:
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Factors that may increase your chance of premature ejaculation include:
Most men experiencing premature ejaculation will notice the condition themselves. The doctor will ask about your symptoms and medical history. A physical exam will be done.
The doctor may search for an underlying medical cause if:
Treatments may include:
This aims to improve your ability to:
It may include:
Counseling may be offered for an individual or for a couple. It is aimed at identifying and treating:
In some cases, a doctor may prescribe a desensitizing cream. It can be applied to the penis to lessen sexual stimulation.
In other cases, a doctor may prescribe an antidepressant. Some antidepressants have been found to prolong the interval from intromission to ejaculation. However, these drugs do not cure the underlying cause of premature ejaculation.
Urology Care Foundation
Family Doctor—American Academy of Family Physicians
Sex Information and Education Council of Canada
Montague DK, Jarow J, et al. AUA guideline on the pharmacologic management of premature ejaculation. J Urol 2004; 172:290-294.
Premature ejaculation. Family Doctor—American Academy of Family Physicians website. Available at: http://familydoctor.org/familydoctor/en/diseases-conditions/premature-ejaculation.html. Updated April 2014. Accessed September 1, 2015.
Premature ejaculation. Urology Care Foundation website. Available at: http://www.urologyhealth.org/urology/index.cfm?article=122. Accessed September 1, 2015.
Premature ejaculation. EBSCO DynaMed Plus website. Available at: http://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T115092/Premature-ejaculation. Updated August 17, 2015. Accessed September 1, 2015.
Pryor JL, Althof SE, et al. Efficacy and tolerability of dapoxetine in treatment of premature ejaculation: an integrated analysis of two double-blind, randomised controlled trials. Lancet 2006; 368:929-927.
Last reviewed September 2016 by Adrienne Carmack, MD
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.
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