November 23, 2014
ABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ

Men's Health

 Health Home >> Men's Health >> Your sex life 

Think you've got the flu?

Enter your postal code to find a clinic near you:
And donít forget to get your personal Doctor Discussion Guide


Rapid (premature) ejaculation

Rapid ejaculation is the new term for premature ejaculation. Both are defined as the lack of ejaculatory control, or ejaculation occurring sooner than desired. The term "rapid" is preferred to avoid any demeaning connotation that "premature" has in this context.

Studies suggest that the average time from penetration to ejaculation is around 2 minutes. For couples where sex is more about recreation than procreation, reaching ejaculation "fast" is less than ideal. Many men with RE complain of ejaculation typically occurring within a dozen strokes following penetration.

Rapid ejaculation affects most men at some point in their life, but not many talk about it. Conservative estimates put the prevalence of RE at about 30% of men. Men who live with RE for a long time have a tendency to develop a poor self-image. Gaining control of ejaculation is part of the solution.

What are the causes of RE?

Physiological causes of RE: Like many areas of medicine, before doctors knew any better, the cause was thought to be psychological, but in reality there are many interacting factors. New research techniques have begun to shed light on some of the physiologic parameters of RE, like hypersensitivity of the ejaculation reflex and of the sensory receptors on the penis. We know that the particular levels and combinations of neurotransmitters like adrenalin and serotonin in different people will play into the equation as well. These can be a function of genetics, learned behaviour, hormone levels, not to mention levels of caffeine and alcohol.

Hereditary factors: A recent report suggests that RE can have a hereditary component. Although research is new, developments continue as more people begin to talk about it. Historically, rapid ejaculation was not a subject most men felt comfortable talking about, but as medical reasons for RE are substantiated, this improves.

Medical conditions and the development of RE: RE can be secondary to a medical cause, like prostatitis, if it develops later in life. This should prompt men to see a doctor. Sometimes RE develops in conjunction with erectile dysfunction (ED). This too should prompt a visit to a physician so that any underlying medical conditions, like diabetes or vascular disease (to name just a few), can be uncovered or ruled out.

What are the consequences of RE?

Often RE results in a great deal of frustration, depression, and marital discord, but not always. Younger men usually have a short "refractory period." This is the time it takes to regain their erection after ejaculation, so sometimes it is easy to ignore the problem. After ejaculation they can just resume intercourse as soon as the erection recurs. It is only when the refractory period increases with age, by the mid-thirties or forties, that RE starts to be a problem for the couple. His partner may be just getting started, and suddenly, he's done. For men with RE, ejaculation usually occurs without much of the mental excitement that generally accompanies it.

If the man's self-image suffers or if his partner's disappointment is particularly evident, then the problem can become even that much worse. Blaming oneself or one's partner can add a whole other dimension of "dis-ease" not typically seen with other medical conditions like diabetes or asthma or hypertension. RE can even lead some marriages to break up.

 
Barry Rich, MD 
in association with the MediResource Clinical Team 

Did you find what you were looking for on our website? Please let us know.

Ad

The contents of this site are for informational purposes only and are meant to be discussed with your physician or other qualified health care professional before being acted on. Never disregard any advice given to you by your doctor or other qualified health care professional. Always seek the advice of a physician or other licensed health care professional regarding any questions you have about your medical condition(s) and treatment(s). This site is not a substitute for medical advice.

© 1996 - 2014 MediResource Inc. - MediResource reaches millions of Canadians each year.