- Male pelvic pain is relatively common, but it can signal a serious medical condition.
- There are many different causes of male pelvic pain, including hernias, male chronic pelvic pain syndrome (CPPS), prostatitis, prostatic hyperplasia, and testicular torsion.
- Men should see a medical provider, such as a urologist, if they experience sudden or chronic pelvic pain.
- The best therapy for pelvic pain depends on the root condition causing the pain. Your medical provider can identify the best treatment for your condition.
Worried about pelvic pain? Read on to learn more about how to overcome your pelvic pain and find support at eDrugstore.com.
How Common is Male Pelvic Pain?
Any pain that develops between your abdomen and thighs can be described as “pelvic pain.” Male pelvic pain is relatively common and can stem from a number of causes, including an injury or a chronic condition. The type of pain you experience can help you and your provider to identify the root cause of the pain.
Symptoms of pelvic pain will vary in intensity, depending on the cause of the pain. Some common signs and symptoms of male pelvic pain include:
- Generalized pain throughout the pelvic area
- Pain specific to one area
- Pain that extends to the groin
- Bladder pain or urinary problems
- Burning sensations
- Swelling and inflammation in the pelvic area
What Causes Male Pelvic Pain?
There are a variety of conditions that result in male pelvic pain. Sudden pelvic pain often signals an injury or infection, such as a hernia or appendicitis. However, gradual or chronic pelvic pain may be caused by more complex conditions.
Regardless of the cause, the “normal” amount of pelvic pain for someone to have is no pain at all. You likely will not be able to identify the root cause of your pelvic pain without the help of a medical provider.
Common conditions that can cause pelvic pain in men include:
- Hernia. There are many types of hernias that can affect men. These include hiatal hernias, inguinal hernias, femoral hernias, and umbilical hernias. Hernias are typically sudden and result from intestinal tissue bulging through weak areas in the abdominal wall. They can occur during exercise, strenuous activity, sex, or other physical activity.
- Male chronic pelvic pain syndrome (CPPS). CPPS may be caused by prostatitis, benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), or similar pelvic conditions. This pain syndrome is characterized by pain that persists beyond what is typically expected for common pelvic conditions.
- Prostatitis. Prostatitis is the inflammation of the prostate gland. Prostatitis can be caused by a bacterial infection or by chronic inflammation with other root causes. Prostatitis can cause pelvic pain, bladder problems, or problems with ejaculation.
- Prostatic hyperplasia. Prostatic hyperplasia is the enlargement of the prostate. This may be caused by BPH, prostatitis, or prostate cancer. It may be accompanied by pelvic pain or bladder problems.
- Testicular Torsion. Testicular torsion occurs when the tissue surrounding the testicle is not completely attached, causing the testicle to turn or rotate. This typically results in severe and sudden pain. This condition requires immediate medical attention.
Other common causes of male pelvic pain include:
- Bladder infection
- Digestive problems
- Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
- Kidney stones
- Sexually transmitted infection (STI)
- Strained muscle
- Urinary tract infection (UTI)
When Should I See a Doctor for Pelvic Pain?
If you notice sudden pelvic pain or struggled with pelvic pain for a significant period of time, you may wish to schedule an appointment with your medical provider. Pelvic pain can signal a serious abdominal infection or injury, so it is important to seek medical attention if you feel significant discomfort or pain. Your primary care physician may refer you to a urologist for pelvic pain and/or sexual dysfunction concerns.
Your provider will likely complete a physical exam and request imaging, urine screens, or bloodwork to determine the root cause of your pelvic pain.
Can I Prevent Male Pelvic Pain?
The best way to prevent sudden pelvic pain is to prevent injury. Methods of preventing other types of pelvic pain include living a healthy lifestyle, practicing safer sex, and managing any chronic conditions.
Specific methods of preventing pelvic pain may include:
- Having routine medical screenings. Seeing your provider on a regular basis and receiving all recommended routine screenings, such as prostate cancer screening, is essential to stay on top of your overall and pelvic health.
- Managing digestive disorders. Digestive issues and intestinal inflammation can both cause and contribute to pelvic pain. Manage any digestive orders, such as IBS, so you can prevent flare-ups of pelvic pain.
- Practicing caution when exercising. Pelvic injuries and hernias are common causes of male pelvic pain. Practice safe form when lifting heavy objects and exercising. Avoid strenuous activities if you are recovering from a pelvic injury.
- Practicing safer sex. STIs are also a common cause of male pelvic pain, making it even more important to use barrier methods during sex or limit your number of sexual partners. Seek treatment for any STI symptoms, including pelvic pain, discharge from the penis, or burning during urination.
How Can I Treat My Pelvic Pain?
The most effective treatment for your pelvic pain will depend on the cause of your condition. Your treatment plan may include a combination of at-home treatment, such as rest and heating the area, and medical intervention.
Common treatments for pelvic pain include:
- Antibiotics. Antibiotics are commonly prescribed to treat bacterial infections that cause bladder infections, UTIs, prostatitis, and STIs.
- Pain medication. Your provider may recommend over-the-counter medication, such as acetaminophen to treat acute or chronic pelvic pain. If this is not effective, they may also prescribe stronger pain medications or muscle relaxers.
- Pelvic floor or physical therapy. If your pain is related to an injury or weak abdominal wall, you may benefit from regular pelvic therapy or physical therapy sessions.
- Surgery. For more advanced conditions, your provider may recommend surgery. Surgery is commonly performed for appendicitis, hernias, kidney stones, and testicular torsion.
Find Support with eDrugstore
If you’re struggling with sexual function issues, such as erectile dysfunction or premature ejaculation, or relationship and intimacy issues, eDrugstore can help. Check out our medication guide or follow the eDrugstore blog for more information about sexual health and other men’s health issues.
Shelby is a public health professional with research and field experience in sexual and reproductive health. She holds a Master of Public Health (MPH) and is a Certified Health Education Specialist (CHES).