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Semen is normally cream-colored or faintly yellowish. But, occasionally, it is a shade of pink. This is due to the presence of blood in the semen, a condition called hematospermia. Although this is an understandably alarming situation for most guys, fortunately it is seldom serious.

It’s difficult to know how common hematospermia is for the simple reason that many men ejaculate while inside their partner and, hence, they don’t actually take a look at their semen. Many cases, therefore, undoubtedly go unreported. In my experience, however, this is not an uncommon condition.

The most common cause of hematospermia is some kind of infection, either of the urethra, the prostate, or the seminal vesicles. In these cases, the condition often goes away once the infection clears up (either naturally or with the help of antibiotics). Nonetheless, if you notice that your semen is a shade of pink you should see a physician or urologist in order to rule out something serious.

Aside from an infection, hematospermia can be caused by:

  • Procedures to sample prostate tissue (prostate biopsy)
  • Calcium buildup inside the prostate (prostatic calculi)
  • Lesions or polyps of the urethra
  • Trauma (i.e. a blow or injury to the groin area)
  • Prostate cancer

In young men, hematospermia is very rarely serious—though, of course, infections should be treated promptly because they can impair a man’s fertility. If there are no signs of an infection, then other types of tests may be performed to rule out other causes. If the cause is some kind of abnormal growth or process in the urinary or reproductive tracts, surgery may be required to fix the problem.

Most of the time, however, the primary goal in the management of hematospermia is simply to explain the situation and reduce the anxiety of the patient.

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