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What Are the Common Causes of Pain during an Orgasm?

By Jodee Redmond
Updated Mar 03, 2024
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Pain during an orgasm can happen to both men and women. Rather than considering this to be a condition in itself, it is usually a symptom of another disorder. It can be attributed to muscle spasms or present in women who have other reproductive health issues. Men experiencing pain during an orgasm may also be experiencing a muscle spasm or have an infection which needs to be treated. This symptom can also be a side effect of some types of male cancers.

When a woman experiences pain during orgasm, it may feel like cramping in the lower abdomen. Some patients report that the pain radiates up into the back or down into the rectal area. It may last for anywhere between a few minutes to a few hours after orgasm.

These symptoms may be caused by muscle spasms in the abdominal area which occur as the woman climaxes. Other possible causes for pain during orgasm in women are gynecological concerns such as endometriosis, ovarian cysts or fibroids. Endometriosis is a condition where tissue normally present in the lining of the uterus attaches to other organs. Ovarian cysts occur when an egg is not released from the ovary and a fluid-filled sac is formed in its place. Fibroids are non-malignant tumors which grow on the walls of the uterus.

Men can also experience pain during orgasm. Contractions in the lower abdomen and pelvic regions may explain the discomfort, especially if the pain is felt in the area near the urethra or prostate gland. The pain can also be explained as being the result of an infection of the prostate. In that instance, antibiotics will be needed to treat the condition and relieve the pain.

Another explanation for pain associated with orgasm in men is that is associated with prostate cancer surgery. Some patients who have undergone a radical prostatectomy to surgically remove the prostate gland, as well as the surrounding tissue, report orgasm pain when they resume sexual activity. This pain may create a burning sensation in the perineal and lower abdominal areas of the body.

Anyone experiencing pain during an orgasm should make an appointment to see their primary care physician. Providing as much detail as possible about the nature and location of the discomfort will help the doctor to determine the cause of the problem. In situations where the pain is not linked to an infection or underlying health issue, the doctor may recommend taking an analgesic pain medication before engaging in sexual activity.

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Discussion Comments
By anon995802 — On May 27, 2016

I wonder why the experts haven't considered pain in the vagina and vulva might be caused by varicose veins. Varicose veins are something my doctor said I might develop during pregnancy. Why not at other times during a woman's life? If a woman had this problem, it makes sense they'd become painful as she was stimulated and fully engorged during orgasm. Just a thought.

By nvsr — On Jan 20, 2014

What causes short pain just as a women reaches orgasm, which is usually happening just after ejaculation?

By Mor — On Aug 16, 2012

@croydon - I'm not sure how long it would take to build those associations, though, and people could definitely work through them. I mean, some people prefer to have a bit of pain during sex (I'm thinking of spanking fetishists for example) so the association might not cripple your sex life forever.

What I would also suggest that you take into account, if the pain is localized in the genitals, is that you might have physically harmed them. Sex is a rough thing to do, even if you're trying to be gentle and it's possible that you might simply have bruised or torn something that you don't notice until the contractions that happen during orgasm.

By croydon — On Aug 15, 2012

If you're experiencing pain during orgasm, you should get it checked out right away. Not only because it might be a symptom of something serious, but also because you could learn to associate it with orgasm.

If you associate having an orgasm with pain, it will make it that much more difficult to reach orgasm, since most of the time people need to relax before they can get to that point. This can be an especially difficult thing for women, as they typically don't learn about their own needs through masturbation like men do and they might already have difficulty relaxing enough to orgasm.

Men might also start experiencing erectile dysfunction, if they build that kind of association. So, it's really worth getting it checked out as soon as possible so that you can get it fixed and continue to have a healthy sex life.

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