Semen allergy to one's own

According to a study from Dutch researchers, some men are allergic to their own semen, developing a mysterious flu-like illness after they have an ejaculation. The condition, known as post-orgasmic illness syndrome or POIS, has been documented since 2002. It manifests as feverishness, runny nose, extreme fatigue and burning eyes, which can last for up to a week.

Marcel Waldinger, a professor of sexual psychopharmacology at Utrecht University in the Netherlands, and his colleagues demonstrated in two papers in the Journal of Sexual Medicine that the syndrome was allergic in nature and that it might be possible to desensitize men to the problem. The team studied 45 men with POIS. Thirty-three agreed to undergo a standard skin allergy test using a diluted form of their own semen; 29 of the 33, or 88 per cent, showed a positive allergic reaction, indicating an autoimmune response. This refutes and earlier theory that POIS lies in the mind or is a psychosomatic disorder.

It is not clear, however, why they exhibited a response to the semen only when it was released from the testicles. Dr Waldinger said, “They didn’t feel ill when they masturbated without ejaculating… But as soon as the semen came from the testes … they became ill, sometimes within a few minutes.”

For the second study Dr Waldinger used what is known as hyposensitisation therapy on two of the men, injecting them with steadily stronger solutions of their semen. The team found that after one and three years, the men showed significantly less POIS symptoms. Professor Waldinger’s team has now started several more POIS patients on hyposensitisation therapy. 

Dr. Ananya Mandal

Written by

Dr. Ananya Mandal

Dr. Ananya Mandal is a doctor by profession, lecturer by vocation and a medical writer by passion. She specialized in Clinical Pharmacology after her bachelor's (MBBS). For her, health communication is not just writing complicated reviews for professionals but making medical knowledge understandable and available to the general public as well.

Citations

Please use one of the following formats to cite this article in your essay, paper or report:

  • APA

    Mandal, Ananya. (2018, August 23). Semen allergy to one's own. News-Medical. Retrieved on December 02, 2021 from https://www.news-medical.net/news/20110120/Semen-allergy-to-ones-own.aspx.

  • MLA

    Mandal, Ananya. "Semen allergy to one's own". News-Medical. 02 December 2021. <https://www.news-medical.net/news/20110120/Semen-allergy-to-ones-own.aspx>.

  • Chicago

    Mandal, Ananya. "Semen allergy to one's own". News-Medical. https://www.news-medical.net/news/20110120/Semen-allergy-to-ones-own.aspx. (accessed December 02, 2021).

  • Harvard

    Mandal, Ananya. 2018. Semen allergy to one's own. News-Medical, viewed 02 December 2021, https://www.news-medical.net/news/20110120/Semen-allergy-to-ones-own.aspx.

Comments

The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of News Medical.
You might also like... ×
Researchers investigate SARS-CoV-2 specific immunity in young Swedish adults