Scientists have known about post orgasmic illness syndrome for almost ten years. It’s been documented in medical journals since 2002. Men with POIS experience flu-like symptoms—fever, extreme fatigue, runny nose—immediately after they ejaculate, and the symptoms can last for up to a week.
Originally, not much was known about POIS. It’s believed to be rare. Some scientists thought that its cause might be psychosomatic, but there was no definitive research on the subject. Men struggling with the disorder were left uncertain and embarrassed. But a Dutch scientists might have finally discovered the cause and a cure:
Marcel Waldinger, a professor of sexual psychopharmacology at Utrecht University in the Netherlands, published two studies in the Journal of Sexual Medicine which suggest that men with POIS have an allergy to their own semen, and that a treatment known as hyposensitization therapy can help reduce its impact.
Now it’s great that Waldinger might have found a cause, but an allergy to your own semen? That sounds almost as terrible as an allergy to bacon (OK, a semen allergy is definitely worse, but it’s close). Waldinger says that hyposensitization therapy—exposing the men to small, but gradually increasing amounts of their own semen through skin injections—may be the cure. Um, what?
Snark aside, POIS sounds awful. It’s sex that makes you sick—mind scrambled, too tired to do anything. And since many family doctors don’t know about POIS, many men were left in the dark, wondering, “What the hell is wrong with me?” Now, hopefully Waldinger’s research holds true, and it lets these guys come forward to try and address it.