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patient education

Priapism (painful erections) associated with sickle cell disease

key information

source: Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust

year: 2020


This leaflet explains about priapism associated with sickle cell disease. If you have any further questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact the doctor or nurse caring for you.

What is a priapism?
Priapism is an unusual erection of the penis that is frequently painful and distressing. These are not associated with normal sexual function or desire. The majority of males with sickle cell anaemia (HbSS) are likely to experience a priapism in their life time. Priapism is less common in boys and men with sickle cell disease (HbSC) and sickle beta thalassaemia (HbSB).

There are two common types of priapism:
-acute (or fulminant)

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