REVEALED: Lake region disease causing pre-mature ejaculation
Homa Bay boasts of having the longest shoreline of Lake Victoria.
This is good for tourism, transport, fishing, and other economic activities.
But having a large water body also has its own disadvantages.
The lake for example harbours many diseases and people around Nyanza are suffering in silence.
Among the diseases affecting residents is schistosomiasis (bilharzia) which can be transmitted from one person to another if one uses water directly from the lake.
Bilharzia is characterised by abdominal and joint pains.
Pain may occur during sexual intercourse or during urination.
This mostly affects men who sometimes fail to seek medical attention because of stigma, leading to far more consequences as the disease may lead to infertility.
Mr Silas Mado, Homa Bay County’s noncommunicable diseases coordinator, men diagnosed with bilharzia may experience premature ejaculation.
He adds that sometimes men have blood in their stool, leading to anemia.
This often makes some men shy away from seeking help, thinking that they could be having a menstrual cycle.
Mr Mado says some studies have also shown that bilharzia affects the reproductive system of men.
“Some studies have shown that schistosome eggs are present in semen indicating that there could be a high number of eggs lodged along the reproductive tract of men,” he says.
According to the medical officer, the disease can cause infertility.
He says when it gets to the reproductive truck, it affects spermatogenesis- the process by which sperm cell production occurs.
“Basically the pathogen destroys sperms. It cuts the sperm tail and it can no longer fertilize an ova,” Mr Mado explains.
He says if not treated, the disease has long-term irreversible consequences, including infertility.
Dr Juluis Ochieng’, a gynecologist at Homa Bay County Teaching and Referral Hospital explains that bilharzia causes inflammation of the epididymis where sperm is produced.
When this happens, he says sperm dies.
“It also causes obstruction of reproductive tubes making sperms unable to swim. This makes men unable to ejaculate,” the medic says.
Dr Ochieng’ adds that bilharzia causes hormonal imbalance which affects the production of testosterone, a primary male hormone responsible for regulating sex differentiation, producing male sex characteristics, spermatogenesis, and fertility.
What makes bilharzia deadly is that very few people pay attention to it.
It is among the neglected tropical diseases.
These are diseases that generally afflict the world’s poor and historically have not received as much attention as other diseases.
There is however hope for patients.
This is done through a regular deworming exercise that mainly targets children along the lake.