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Blood in the semen
Alternative namesSemen - bloody; Blood in ejaculation
Blood in the semen, called hematospermia, may be undetectable (microscopic) or visible in the ejaculation fluid.
Associated symptoms may include:
Blood in the semen may be caused by inflammation, infection, blockage, or injury anywhere along the male reproductive tract. It may indicate disease or a problem within the urethra, testicles, epididymis, or prostate.
Blood in the semen is usually the result of inflammation of the seminal vesicles, and will usually go away spontaneously. Often, the cause can not be determined. If the blood does not clear and ejaculate is persistently stained with blood, more extensive tests should be done, such as urinalysis and culture, semen analysis and culture, and ultrasound of the seminal vesicles.
Minor injuries may be treated with rest, applying ice, and monitoring symptoms. Major injuries may require reconstructive surgery.
Infections can often be treated with antibiotics taken by mouth (or intravenous antibiotics if symptoms are severe).
Blockages are typically treated with surgery. If cancerous tumors are the source of obstruction, radiation and/or chemotherapy may also be indicated.
Call your health care provider if
Always call your doctor if you notice any blood in semen.
The doctor will perform a physical examination, looking especially for fever swollen lymph nodes, a swollen or tender scrotum, discharge from your urethra, or an enlarged or tender prostate.
To help diagnose the cause of the problem, your doctor will ask medical history questions, such as:
The following diagnostic tests may be performed:
The urinalysis may show high white blood cells.
A culture of of the urine after prostatic massage may show bacterial growth and high levels of white blood cells. However, your health care provider may choose not to massage your prostate if it is obviously swollen and tender, because massage may potentially spread the infection. This could lead to bacteremia or sepsis (generalized infection in which bacteria are present in your bloodstream, not just the prostate).
Update Date: 11/12/2003Scott M. Gilbert, M.D., Department of Urology, Columbia-Presbyterian Medical Center, New York, NY. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network.
Last updated: Tue, 06 Jan 2009 00:20:03 GMT