Most articles concerning men and orgasms have to do with curbing it—staving off the Big O to extend pleasure, or so their female partners can climax first.

One 25-year-old man avoided them for a very different, and unfortunate reason: He was allergic to his own orgasms, according to a recent study.

“He dreaded ejaculation,” researchers wrote in the journal Urology Case Reports. Doing so would invite a torrent of symptoms: low energy, weakness, mental fog and trouble finding the right word. Talk about mind-blowing sex—in all the wrong ways.

The poor fellow began experiencing the condition at 16, when he noticed that masturbating or having sex triggered these woes. “Onset of symptoms could be immediate or delayed by 2-3 days, and would last 1-2 weeks,” the researchers wrote. As a result, the unnamed man avoided social interactions when the symptoms hit. Naturally, this affected his work and school life.

What this man had was post-orgasmic illness syndrome, or POIS. It’s rare and tough to treat. We’ve only known about POIS since 2002, when it was discovered by Marcel D. Waldinger and his team. 

Waldinger defined it as more than an allergy: it’s a systemic auto-immune response to seminal plasma, or semen. He also noted many physicians’ lack of POIS knowledge, which might lead many to dismiss symptoms as more psychological than physical, and refer their patients to a psychologist for treatment.

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However, the condition and its symptoms are very much physical, and can include flu-like illness; depression; having irritated, burning eyes with blurred vision; dry mouth and muscle weakness or pain. They often emerge within a half-hour after orgasm. As POIS discoverer Waldinger found, many of his 45 subjects ended up avoiding sex and masturbation, resigned to a chaste life. He tried injecting subjects with diluted samples of their own semen as treatment, but this didn’t work.

The researchers’ subject previously tried many remedies, including diet, antihistamines, supplements and niacin. Those didn’t work either.  

The culprit with their subject, they determined, was a testosterone deficiency. Injections of hCG — dubbed “the pregnancy hormone,” but also used to help men boost testosterone production— three times a week over six weeks showed an increase in total testosterone.

And, his symptoms diminished significantly. He could orgasm without ailment. He was happy and able to masturbate regularly—and chase sex that was explosive, but didn’t blow up his life.

“Importantly, he no longer experienced dread with anticipated sexual activity,” the researchers concluded.

That’s what we call a happy ending.

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