This may sounds funny but when I searched about the question over the Internet, I found an overall report which stated as a conclusion:

When the heart stops forcing the blood around the body, it pools in whatever area is lowest. Sometimes people die standing up and sometimes people die lying face down. I think everyone here has enough spatial reasoning to understand what kind of blood pooling that would encourage. Meanwhile, for all that talk of relaxing muscles after death, it doesn't last forever. Certain types of muscle cells are activated by calcium ions. After activation, the cells expend energy putting the calcium ions back outside the cell. After death, the membranes become more permeable to calcium and the cells don't expend as much energy to push the ions out, so the muscles contract. This does lead to rigor mortis and can lead to ejaculation. It's real. It happens


I would like to clarify that whether this information is true. Are there any research papers or any other things to prove this?


1 Answer 1


In a closely related question, Does a hanged man get an erection?, we have seen that terminal erections are a known phenomena, especially when the spinal cord is damaged.

So, the first part of the question is: Yes, dead men can have erections.

Whether they can have ejaculation is a more complicated question.

In Principles of Forensic Medicine from 1861, William Augustus Guy described that, with hanging:

in the male a more or less complete state of erection of the penis, with discharge of urine, of mucus, or of the prostatic fluid, is a frequent occurrence. It may be expected to be present in at least one case in three. But it must be borne in mind, that these appearances in the genital organs, when they do occur, are not characteristic of death by hanging or strangulation, for they have been observed in other forms of violent and sudden death, as in fatal gun-shot wounds of the brain, and of the large vessels, and in positing by prussic acid. It is probably that the fluid ejected from the urethra is not semen but mucus; for in the report of the case of a criminal executed in America, (`American Journal of the Medical Sciences,' May 1840,) there was no priapism, but a fluid was discharged which is stated not to have contained any seminal animalcules.

So, having some discharge from the penis of a corpse appears to have been uncommon, except in certain forms of death, and the discharge, when measured in a single case in 1840, wasn't semen.

In conclusion: According to an admittedly very old source, the quoted text is wrong. Erections occur for some forms of death, and occasional non-ejaculatory discharges in others.

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