Maybe. A spinal cord injury can affect an injured victim’s sensory, motor, and sexual functions. Anyone experiencing spinal cord injuries often has concerns regarding pregnancy and fertility. Raising children is one of the greatest joys in life, and a spinal cord injury can impair an individual’s sexual function.
You might be eligible for compensation if you received a spinal cord injury that was not your fault. Contact Ehline Law and our personal injury attorneys today for a free case review.
When a woman receives a spinal injury, the injury does not affect her pregnancy ability. However, it is not the same for paralyzed men, as often, after spinal cord injury, men may have erectile dysfunction or problems with ejaculation and their sexual health.
A spinal cord injury directly impacts the amount of ejaculation a man can produce, which negatively affects pregnancy. Research suggests there is only a 10% chance for men to father children after spinal injuries since the sperm does not reach the egg.
Fortunately, modern science has provided new technologies and methods to help couples conceive a child after the man has had spinal cord injuries. It has allowed couples to live a normal family life and cope with taking care of their children just like how able-bodied couples can.
Nerve stimulation and blood flow together help achieve an erection, but changes in sexual function can affect an individual’s function. The level and severity of the injury affect the degree of changes in sexual function.
Let’s look at the three types of erection and how spinal injuries affect them.
Psychogenic is the type of erection that happens after experiencing visual or sensory arousal, sight, and sound. An injury at the T11 level blocks communication from the brain to the damaged part, so simply thinking about something sensual may not work. Those who can achieve a psychogenic erection might have a longer and fuller penis, but it may not be rigid enough for penetration.
Any physical touch or stimulation of the genitalia results in a reflexogenic erection. Any sense of touch to the penis can result in such an erection, whether it is stroking or simply caressing. Men with spinal injuries above the T10 level still have a reflex erection. However, unintended erection is pretty common in such patients affecting their quality of life.
Also known as spontaneous erection, this type of erection occurs during the night or early in the morning without the need for stimulation. On average, men who do not have erectile dysfunction have nocturnal erections around 3 to 5 times a night. Those who have had spinal injuries may also exhibit this type of erection. However, it may not last long.
Many different technologies, techniques, and medicines allow spinal cord-injured men to have an erection and raise children.
Those with a fuller and firmer reflex erection can use constriction bands to restrict the blood from leaving the penis, ensuring a strong and hard erection with enough penetration. These bands are a great way to maintain an erection as they are cheaper and also reusable. Avoid using metal rings, which can cause irritation or bruising if kept on for more than 20 minutes.
Also commonly referred to as a penis pump, the device creates a vacuum that pulls the blood into the penis. It comes with a constriction band to help hold the erection for longer.
There is a common misconception that medications help achieve an erection, which is not valid, as they only ensure a rigid and longer erection. However, there are side effects associated with using such medicines, such as headaches, low blood pressure, and more.
Not as effective as penile injection therapy, urethral suppositories in combination with the medicine Alprostadil can help achieve an erection in 30 to 40% of injured men.
A doctor may recommend a combination of up to four different injections into the penis to help relax the organ and increase blood flow. It is an expensive therapy and may not be available everywhere since compounded medications are only available at special pharmacies. Penile injections are highly effective, producing positive results in 88% of injured men.
A penile prosthesis is a three-piece device that needs to be surgically placed inside the organ to achieve erections. However, this can damage the penile structure, and there are mechanical and surgical risks to this procedure, such as mechanical failure and infections.
There are many other ways an injured victim can experience pleasure, and male sexuality is not only about sexual intercourse. However, getting a girl pregnant has everything to do with ejaculation. Sperm motility and sperm quality are what are essential when trying to get your spouse pregnant. In retrograde ejaculation cases or cases where there is no ejaculation, there are relevant treatments such as medications, surgical sperm retrieval, testicular sperm extraction, or donor sperm to achieve pregnancy.
Another essential thing to remember is that those with spinal injuries can receive sexually transmitted diseases, so make sure to use protection. Whether it is paralyzed women or men, spinal cord injuries have long-term consequences, and without professional medical advice, it may be challenging to try to live an everyday life. If you received spinal injuries due to someone else’s fault, contact us at (213) 596-9642 and get a free consultation on your injury case today!
Michael Ehline is an inactive U.S. Marine and world famous legal historian. Michael helped draft the Cruise Ship Safety Act and has won some of the largest motorcycle accident settlements in U.S. History. Together with his legal team, Michael and the Ehline Law Firm collect damages on behalf of clients. We pride ourselves in being available to answer your most pressing and difficult questions 24/7. We are proud sponsors of the Paul Ehline Memorial Motorcycle Ride, and a a Service Disabled Veteran Operated Business. (SDVOB.) We are ready to fight.
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