Definition

In DSM-IV (American Psychiatric Association, 1994), retarded ejaculation is termed Male Orgasmic Disorder and defined as "a persistent or recurrent delay in, or absence of, orgasm in a male following a normal sexual excitement phase during sexual activity that the clinician, taking into account the person's age, judges to be adequate in focus, intensity, and duration." In more simple terms, retarded ejaculation means that a man finds it difficult or impossible to ejaculate, despite the presence of adequate sexual stimulation, erection, and conscious desire to achieve orgasm. Some of these men may struggle to ejaculate with such desperation that they may physically exhaust themselves, and sometimes even their partner, in the attempt. Delayed ejaculation may occur in coitus, masturbation (either by the patient or by the partner), as well as during anal or oral intercourse.

Throughout the years, a variety of terms have been used to refer to this eja-culatory disorder. Synonyms for delayed ejaculation are retarded ejaculation, inhibited ejaculation, difficult ejaculation, late ejaculation, and ejaculatio retarda or retardata. Other terms for failure of ejaculation are inability to ejaculate, no ejaculation, anejaculation, ejaculatory incompetence, impotentia ejacu-landi or ejaculationis, ejaculatio deficiens or nulla, and lack (loss, failure, inability) of ejaculation.

It has to be noted that in DSM-IV there is no formal distinction between retarded ejaculation and failure of ejaculation. Both entities are erroneously termed male orgasmic disorder.

One distinguishes a lifelong (primary) and acquired (secondary) form. If the disorder has always been present, the disorder is termed as lifelong. In the acquired form, the disorder appears somewhere in life after previous normal ejaculatory functioning.

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