Erect Penis on a dead guy?

I have a friend that works in a mortuary that has told me that sometimes a male cadaver comes in with an erect penis. I doubted that until I saw photographs of dead Iraqi soldiers with seemingly the same condition. My boyfriend insists this is physcially impossible.

What causes this if it indeed exists?

Thanks for any ideas.

I am not a doctor, but I’ll take a stab at it. A penis is probably not erect because of increased blood flow, it’s probably erect because of reduced blood flow. i.e there’s less blood flowing out than there should be. If whatever mechanism restricts blood from leaving the penis clenches shut it could possibly maintain an erection(like an inflated balloon) even after no blood is flowing in. Just a WAG though.

Death erection


Not safe for work? Why not? The link brings up a page of words, no pictures.

  1. I had it confused with the wikipedia article, which has pictures.
  2. Workplace policies vary. Some employers might not approve of their employees reading about death erections on their dime. Better safe than sorry.
  3. Hi Opal!

Do you want the link to a picture?

i know that erect penises are common with back injuries… maybe that will uh, point you in the right direction

Band name!

Haven’t you ever seen Clerks? :wink:

The common term for it is “angel lust”. It is very common in cases like executions, where panic causes increased blood flow to the lower extremeties. After death the blood remains in the penis. It can also be caused by gases released by the decomposition process.

If someone can’t figure out that a link called “death erection” in a thread about post-death erections is a link to an article discussing post-death erections, how would they possibly realize that a “Not Safe for Work” disclaimer next to the link meant that clicking on the link might not be appropriate if they were at work?

Not to beat a dead horse… er, go over a topic unnecessarily. Can’t be too safe.


Some, you just can’t reach. . . :wink:

So I’m guessing that “morning wood” is caused by similar blood flow patterns?

Along with higher testosterone levels in the morning, you’re relaxed and you are more likely to have been dreaming, things which promote erections. If you’ve got a full bladder, you’ve got another factor to consider; your body sometimes uses the partial or full blockage of the urethra when you have an erection to keep you from wetting yourself.

Not really the same thing at all.

I knew I could count on you all!

I always wondered how the dead guy had sex in “Weekend at Bernie’s.”

You learn something new every day.

Makes for good dinnertime trivia. :smiley:

The movie Kissed has some graphic discussions and representations of the topic.