Dear Dr. Joe,
My yoga teacher recently told me that 2% of all men fart when they ejaculate. She’d just learned about this in a sex ed course she was taking, but she forgot the name of the disorder. Have you ever heard of this? Is it true?
— Just Curious (No, Really)
Dear J.C. (N.R.),
Oh right, the ol’ shoot-and-poot? Yah, never heard of it – at least not until you asked. In ten years of urology practice, no one had ever asked me this question. But the idea seemed possible, since, at the moment of ejaculation, there is involuntary muscle contraction, and an increase in intra-abdominal pressure. The anal sphincter should contract as well to compensate for this force, but if one had a weak sphincter, I suppose that some gas could escape.
My initial literature searches were magically fruitless, but imagine my surprise when I stumbled across an article entitled “Flaturia: passage of flatus at coitus.” It was published in 2007 out of Cairo University. But it’s not in men; it’s in women. The mechanism of flatulence is not clear, but the theory is that, during vaginal intercourse, the penis puts repeated pressure on the lower anal canal. In some women, this buffeting causes relaxation of the internal anal sphincter, and eventual uncontrollable farting.
A Google search of “flaturia” brings up a bunch of results, but they all predominantly refer back to this article.
— Dr. Joe
Dr. Joe earned his undergraduate degree in Molecular Biology from Princeton University. After attending the Loyola University Stritch School of Medicine, he completed his residency training in urological surgery at the Los Angeles County Medical Center. He lives and works in Chicago, IL. Keep an eye out for his upcoming blog at docjoe.net.