Have you ever wondered why you’ve been having erectile problems after a sex injury or a traumatic accident? It might be hard flaccid syndrome (HFS).
Hard flaccid syndrome is a condition that causes your penis to be in a constant state of being both half-flaccid and half-erect.
This persists during times of sexual arousal and stimulation, which makes it hard for men to enjoy sex to the fullest. The penis remains semi-rigid in normal, non-sexual arousal, which can cause discomfort.
In some cases, HFS can be painless and numb. Other times, it’s accompanied by intense pain when urinating or having bowel movements.
Despite it being a very real condition to some people, medical experts fail to recognize this illness as a real condition in daily practice, stating that it’s not “well-defined” at the current time.
With insufficient research and medical recognition, many men end up with the wrong treatment plan that does nothing to help their case, and only worsens it.
To treat HFS, it’s essential to understand it. Read on to learn more about the probable causes, symptoms, and treatment plans of a hard flaccid syndrome.
Causes of Hard Flaccid Syndrome
Rather, this condition is acquired solely because of injury to the penis. Specifically, it pertains to injuries in the pelvic floor or tailbone, close to the base of the penis.
Traumatic injuries can manifest following different types of events, including:
- Improper use of penile vacuum
- Tough masturbation
- Rough sex
- Stretching your penis (jelqing)
- Excessive squatting and intense exercise
In rare cases, hard flaccid syndrome may also occur after a patient has gone under the influence of the recreational drug marijuana. Stress and fatigue can also exacerbate this condition and lead to symptom development.
Symptoms of Hard Flaccid Syndrome
While conditions like erectile dysfunction mostly affect men in the later years, HFS can affect men of any age, even as young as their 20s.
Most symptoms of HFS affect the sexual organs.
Aside from the semi-rigid, semi-flaccid state, here are other symptoms that may accompany HFS.
- Reduced number of morning and nocturnal erections
- Penile and perineal pain
- Penile numbness or coldness
- Chronic pelvic pain syndrome
- Difficulty achieving or maintaining an erect penis
- Need for extreme visual stimulation for an erection
Treatment for Hard Flaccid Syndrome
While there’s no dedicated treatment for HFS currently, patients have seen positive outcomes following the treatments below.
Lifestyle improvements are effective ways to prevent and treat hard flaccid syndrome at home. This involves making changes to your lifestyle to manage symptoms. Ideally, any behavioral changes should be followed-up with treatment from clinical settings for the best results.
Behavioral modifications can mean big swings in your usual routine. Typically, this includes:
- Learning to cope with stress and anxiety: This can be done through relaxation techniques such as yoga, meditation, and deep breathing exercises.
- Changing your sleeping habits: This means developing a regular sleep schedule (7-9 hours for adults) and avoiding stimulants such as caffeine before bedtime.
- Exercising regularly: Exercise releases endorphins, which have mood-boosting effects. Physical activity can also help to improve circulation and reduce stress levels.
- Quit smoking: Smoking damages blood vessels and nerves. It also increases your risk for erectile dysfunction and other sexual problems.
- Cutting back on alcohol: Alcohol can cause hardening of the arteries, which can be bad for sexual function.
- Healthy eating: Eating the right diet can improve libido and help reduce inflammation throughout the body.
Acoustic Wave Therapy
Acoustic wave therapy or shockwave therapy is an effective treatment for hard flaccid syndrome. One study reported it to be an effective alternative method if all other types of treatment have failed.
Shockwave therapy is a non-invasive, painless treatment that is typically done in a series of three to five sessions. This form of therapy involves using sound waves to stimulate blood flow and promote healing.
Most men see significant improvement after just a few sessions.
Pelvic Floor Physical Therapy
If you’re experiencing HFS, your best bet is to start doing pelvic floor exercises. Also known as Kegels, these exercises strengthen the muscles around your bladder and bowel.
The beauty of this form of treatment is that you can do it anywhere, and no one will even know you’re doing it.
To properly do a pelvic floor muscle, follow the steps below:
- Start by finding the right muscles. The next time you urinate, try to stop the flow of urine mid-stream. The muscles you use to do this are the ones you need to focus on.
- Once you’ve found the right muscles, tighten your pelvic floor muscles for a count of three, then relax them for a count of three.
- Do 10 repetitions of steps 1 and 2 twice a day.
Psychotherapy and Yoga Exercises
If your HFS is due to psychological causes, you may benefit from meeting with a therapist or counselor. They can help you work through any underlying anxiety or mental health problems that may be causing your condition.
Your therapist may also teach you some relaxation techniques that can help you ease your symptoms. Pelvic yoga, for example, is a type of yoga specifically designed to help relieve pelvic pain that your physician may prescribe.
Two pelvic yoga exercises men can follow are:
- Mountain pose: Stand erect and put a block between your thighs. Then, carefully try to use your inner thighs to raise the block.
- Chair pose: Keep your feet planted on the floor at all times. Next, do a squatting position and raise your hands as high as possible. Hold, then try to lift your pelvic muscles. Stand up straight once more, then repeat as often as you’d like.
Contact a Local Men’s Clinic for a Sexual Health Medical Consultation
Going soft during sex can be debilitating, but it’s both preventable and treatable. With the right diagnosis and treatment plan, many men can overcome HFS and regain sexual function.
If you have any of the symptoms of HFS, it’s important to see a doctor as soon as possible. Early diagnosis and treatment can make a big difference in the outcome.
The medical professionals at Precise Men’s Medical Center in Cleveland specialize in treating conditions that impact men’s health. Our concierge approach positions your unique case at the centerpoint of our focus. We don’t just give you a pill for ED and send you on your way. We treat the underlying issues that led to conditions such as ED, Low Testosterone, and more. We will work with you to develop a personalized treatment plan that meets your unique needs. Contact our office today to schedule an appointment.