Retrograde ejaculation

  • By Dr. Arijit Ghosh

Signs and symptoms

Retrograde ejaculation does not affect erection of the penis or the ability to achieve orgasm. The signs and symptoms are as follows:

  1. The patients ejaculate very little or no semen known as dry ejaculate
  2. Cloudy urine
  3. Infertility


During orgasm in male, a tube known as Vas deferens transports the sperm. The muscles around the bladder normally tighten to prevent it entering the bladder. If the muscles around bladder do not tighten effectively, sperms enter the bladder instead of being ejected out. The following causes may lead to retrograde ejaculation:

  1. As a complication of surgery of bladder or prostate.
  2. Weakness of the nerve supplying the muscles around bladder due to damage during surgery or diseases processes like diabetes, trauma to spinal cord and other neurological diseases.
  3. As side effects of medications used to treat some diseases like enlarged prostate, high blood pressure, etc.

Risk factors

Any surgery to bladder or prostate, medications to treat high blood pressure, enlarged prostate, etc. and some neurological diseases increases risks and may precipitate retrograde ejaculation.


Most common complication is inability to make the wife pregnant, known as male infertility. Retrograde ejaculation also causes psychological trauma and associate with less pleasurable orgasm due to psychological stress.


A provisional diagnosis is made by the doctor based on the current complaints of the patients. The doctor asks follow up questions to aid the diagnosis. The diagnosis is confirmed by the analysis of the urine sample. Urine analysis shows presence of large amount of sperms in urine.


If retrograde ejaculation is caused by drugs, then offending drug is removed from the treatment regimen. Treating the underlying cause is also required. If retrograde ejaculation is associated with male infertility, then treatment of infertility is undertaken.

Emotional support

Alterations associated with orgasm are usually associated with decreased emotional and physiological satisfaction. It often leads to emotional and psychological stress both in husband and wife. It becomes a serious problem if the wife wishes to get pregnant as she is unable to conceive due the problem of retrograde ejaculation in her husband. Treatment of infertility is expensive and requires stressful medical procedures. Help of a psychologist may be required for counseling. Simultaneously treatment of infertility is also required if the couple wishes to have a child.

The impact of retrograde ejaculation is more psychological than physical. It is associated with added burden if it is associated with infertility and the couple wishes to have a child. Proper psychological counseling is required for the couple.