Disorder - PriapismOrgan Systems Involved
Priapism describes a persistent, painful erection of the penis without any sexual stimulation. Prolonged priapism results in swelling, drying and eventual death of the penis tissues. Affected cats can often still urinate but only slowly and with difficulty.
Cats at Risk
Priapism has been associated with complications of castration, lower urinary tract diseases, trauma from attempted matings and concurrently with vessel inflammation associated with feline infectious peritonitis (FIP).
Conservative treatments such as penile lubrication and massage, corticosteroids, antibiotics and diuretics can be attempted but is not successful in all cases. Surgery to amputate the penis and create a new urethral opening (perineal urethrotomy) is required when priapism fails to resolve.