Male Dyspareunia: Causes, Symptoms, and Treatments of Painful Intercourse for Men

Painful intercourse, or dyspareunia, is usually thought of as a problem that only affects women, but it is essential to know that guys can also have this sexual problem. Male dyspareunia might not get the attention it needs because of the shame and embarrassment of the topic. This could cause fewer cases to be reported.

This piece aims to explain male dyspareunia by talking about its causes, symptoms, and solutions. Getting more people to know about and understand this condition can help break down obstacles, open up talks, and improve the sexual health of those with it. [1]

with Male Dyspareunia

Causes of Male Dyspareunia

  1. Infections: Genital diseases like urinary tract infections (UTIs), sexually transmitted infections (STIs), and prostatitis can cause pain during or after a sexual encounter. In addition, these diseases can cause redness, swelling, or soreness in the pubic area, making it hard to have sexual relations.
  2. Peyronie’s Disease: This disease happens when fibrous scar tissue forms inside the penis. This makes the penis curve oddly and causes painful erections. Due to the changed shape of the penis, men with Peyronie’s disease often feel pain or discomfort when making love.
  3. Phimosis: Men with phimosis have a foreskin that is too tight to pull back over the head of the penis (glans). This can be painful during sex, especially if the foreskin is pulled back hard or if there is a lot of pressure.
  4. Balanitis: Balanitis is a disease of the glans penis, usually caused by an illness or not caring for oneself well. As a result, the glans can become red, swollen, and irritated, making intimacy painful. Men with balanitis may also feel pain when they urinate or even when they touch the area.
  5. Penile Fracture: A penile fracture is a rare but dangerous injury to the penis. It is usually caused by violent bending or direct damage during sexual activity. This injury can cause pain, swelling, and bruises, making it hard or impossible to get an erection or have sexual relations.
  6. Psychological Factors: Mental health problems like worry, sadness, or relationship problems can cause male dyspareunia. Because the mind and body are so closely linked, these things can cause pain during sexual activity. Performance anxiety or fear of pain can also make the body tense up, which makes the pain worse.

Symptoms of Male Dyspareunia

  1. Pain during or after intercourse: Pain during or after sexual activity is the main sign that a man has dyspareunia. This pain can feel like a sharp pain, a burning pain, or a painful pain. It can happen at the base, the shaft, or the tip of the penis, and the pain can be mild or severe, based on what’s causing it.
  2. Difficulty maintaining an erection: Men who have a painful sexual experience may find it hard to keep an erection going. Pain can be annoying and may cause worry, making it hard to concentrate on getting excited and feeling good. This can lead to a circle of anger and increased worry, worsening the problem and hurting the person’s confidence and sense of self-worth.
  3. Reluctance to engage in sexual activity: Men with dyspareunia might not do anything sexual at all because they are afraid of pain. This avoidance can cause a person’s libido to go down and strain close relationships because partners may feel rejected or unsatisfied. In these cases, partners need to talk to each other to understand why they’re avoiding each other and can work together to solve the problem.
  4. Emotional distress: Male dyspareunia can cause physical and mental pain, such as feelings of not being good enough, embarrassment, and anger. These feelings can have a significant effect on a person’s mental health and well-being as a whole. Therefore, men with dyspareunia should seek help from a partner, a friend, or a mental health worker. This will help them deal with the emotional problems they’re having.

Diagnosis of Male Dyspareunia

A doctor will examine his medical history and do a complete physical check to determine if the man has dyspareunia. They may ask when and how the pain started, what it feels like, and if there are any underlying health problems. For example, one could do the following tests:

  1. Urinalysis: A urinalysis is a famous medical test that can help rule out diseases like urinary tract infections (UTIs) or sexually transmitted infections (STIs). By looking at a pee sample, the doctor can see if bacteria or other germs could be causing pain during sexual activity.
  2. Blood tests: Blood tests can tell you much about your hormone levels and whether or not your body is inflamed. Male dyspareunia may be caused by a deeper problem that can be shown by abnormal hormone levels or signs of inflammation. A doctor or nurse may order blood tests to identify problems as much as possible about the patient’s health.
  3. Ultrasound: An ultrasound is a non-invasive diagnostic method of imaging that uses sound waves to make pictures of things inside the body. For example, it can be used to look for abnormalities in the penis and pelvic area, such as growths, blocks, or differences in how the body is built that could be causing pain during sexual activity.
  4. Penile Doppler ultrasound: With this type of ultrasound, the focus is on measuring blood flow in the penis. By measuring blood flow, a doctor can determine if there are any circulatory problems, like insufficient blood flow or venous leaks, that could cause male dyspareunia or erectile dysfunction.
  5. Diagnostic imaging: In some cases, extra imaging tests like X-rays or MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) may be needed to find anatomical problems or signs of damage in the pelvic area. These new imaging methods can give doctors a lot of information about the bones, muscles, and soft tissues, which helps them figure out why a patient is hurting and develop a suitable treatment plan.

Treatment Options for Male Dyspareunia

The best way to treat male dyspareunia relies on what’s causing it. Some popular ways to treat patients are:

  1. Antibiotics: Suppose an infection, like a sexually transmitted infection (STI), prostatitis, or balanitis, is the cause of male dyspareunia. In that case, a doctor may recommend a course of drugs to eliminate the infection and ease the pain during sexual activity.
  2. Topical creams or ointments: When there is redness or swelling of the skin, doctors may suggest using creams or ointments to soothe the area and make sexual activity less painful.
  3. Pain management: Pain can be managed during intercourse with over-the-counter pain medicines like ibuprofen or aspirin. These medicines can help lower inflammation and ease the pain of male dyspareunia for a little while.
  4. Corticosteroids: When there are a lot of bumps and pain, cortisone shots may reduce and ease the swelling. These solid anti-inflammatory drugs can help quickly, but you should use them carefully because they might have side effects.
  5. Surgery: If you have Peyronie’s disease, a broken penile, or a severe phimosis case, you may need surgery. Depending on the problem and the patient’s wants, procedures can include removing scar tissue, fixing the penile, or circumcision.
  6. Sex therapy and counseling: Sexual treatment or counseling can help with dyspareunia if psychological issues cause it. For example, this therapy may involve helping the person deal with performance anxiety, relationship problems, or past stressful events that make it hard for them to enjoy pain-free sexual action.
  7. Lifestyle changes: Through a healthy diet, regular exercise, and stress-reduction methods, you can improve your general health and well-being, which can positively affect sexual performance and help relieve pain during intercourse. These changes can also help improve your physical and mental health.
  8. Lubricants: Using personal lubricants during sexual activity can help reduce friction and pain, primarily when the pain is caused by dryness or skin inflammation. There are different kinds of oils, such as water-based, silicone-based, and oil-based, and you can find them at most drugstores or online.

Coping with Male Dyspareunia

Dyspareunia is a condition that affects men and may make daily life very difficult. The following are some methods that have helped people deal with the situation:

  1. Communication: Talking openly with your partner about male dyspareunia can help build understanding and support in the relationship. In addition, this kind of open conversation can create a safe place to talk about ways to deal with performance anxiety and find answers that can make both people’s sexual experiences better.
  2. Seek professional help: You should see a doctor immediately for a good diagnosis and treatment if you have male dyspareunia. Early remedies can make a big difference in the result, and your healthcare provider can help you figure out the best way to treat your case.
  3. Experiment with different positions: Trying out different sexual positions may help ease pain and make you feel more at ease during a session. In addition, some parts may hurt less, so you can try other things to find what works best for you and your partner as you deal with dyspareunia.
  4. Focus on intimacy: Staying close to your partner is essential, even when discussing something painful. Do sexual activities that don’t involve penetration, like cuddling, kissing, or oral sex, to get closer and feel more connected without causing physical pain.
  5. Practice relaxation techniques: Relaxation methods like meditation, progressive muscle relaxation, or deep breathing can help reduce nervousness and stress before and during sexual activity. These techniques help you feel more relaxed, making it easier to focus on pleasure and less painful to be intimate.


Male dyspareunia is a complicated and often unreported problem that can significantly affect a person’s quality of life. To solve the problem, it is essential to know what caused it, its signs, and how to treat it. Individuals and couples can handle this tricky situation better by encouraging open conversation, getting professional help, and trying different coping methods.

The main goal for men with dyspareunia is to improve their general sexual health and well-being. By working together, people with this condition and medical workers can develop personalized treatment plans and support systems that help them deal with the problems this condition causes and improve their quality of life.


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