New York: A young man in the US has claimed that his penis shrunk by a total of 1.5 inches after contracting Covid-19 last July.
The man in his 30s claimed in a letter written to Slate Magazine's How to Do It podcast, where they answer questions about sex, submitted anonymously by their audience, New York Post reported.
In the latest episode, the person said after being hospitalised in July 2021 for Covid, he experienced erectile dysfunction. While the condition was resolved after treatment, he found a more permanent change. "I seem to be left with a lasting problem. My penis has shrunk," he said.
"Before I got sick, I was above average, not huge, but definitely bigger than normal. Now I've lost about an inch and a half and become decidedly less than average."
His experience, however, is far from the first reported case of post-Covid erectile dysfunction in men.
A study published in March 2021 in Andrology and supported by the Italian Ministry of Education, University and Research showed that erectile dysfunction was higher in those who had contracted Covid.
Of the 100 sexually active men in the study, 25 had contracted Covid previously, and 75 had not.
The prevalence of erectile dysfunction (ED), measured with the Sexual Health Inventory for Men, was significantly higher in the Covid positive group, with 28 per cent experiencing it, versus just 9.33 per cent in the Covid negative group, a third as many, Jerusalem Post reported.
"On top of well-described pathophysiological mechanisms, there is preliminary evidence in a real-life population of ED as a risk factor of developing Covid-19 and possibly occurring as a consequence of Covid-19," the study noted.
In additionally, another study published in September 2020, also concluded that "Covid-19 has a uniquely harmful impact on men's health and erectile function through biological, mental health, and healthcare access mechanisms."
Speaking to the podcast, urologist Ashley G. Winter explained that the phenomenon of Covid causing shrunken genitalia could be entirely possible.
"You get hard because a whole bunch of blood moves into your penis and stays there," Winter was quoted as saying.
"When those blood vessels are affected, you can get erectile dysfunction," she added.