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You Can Fart From Your Penis (Yes, Really… Well, Okay, Sort Of)

What makes a pee-pee go poot-poot?

You can grow tired of people. People, with their violence, their hatred, their bigotry, scurrying about leading their shitty little lives, so full of nothing. Every day sees another hero disgraced, every headline makes the world seem less kind. People are cruel, you think. People are cruel and the world is ugly.

But then you learn it’s possible to fart out of your dick and you think, Goddamn it, people are incredible! What a glorious world. Hey, is that a rainbow? Let’s all have a party!

It’s not exactly farting out of your dick — much like pooping out of your mouth, that would be a sign something was quite dramatically wrong with your body — and it’s not a healthy thing to do. Rather, air in your urine can be a symptom of some fairly unpleasant health conditions. Still though, it’s quite close to farting out of your dick

Wild.

So what causes phallic pharts? It’s known as pneumaturia, with “pneuma” meaning “air,” “uria” meaning “pee” and “t” meaning “parping out through your.” It’s generally a symptom of something like a colovesical fistula, where an inflammation or ulcer has caused a passage to form between the bladder and colon, allowing air to travel between them, and gas from your colon to end up in your urine. Conditions like Crohn’s disease, where the immune system essentially attacks the gastrointestinal tract, or diverticulitis (where abnormal pouches form in the wall of the large intestine) make infections like this more likely. 

It’s also, like all too many health conditions, more likely as you get older. Sci-fi fans interested in reading about ramrod-rips may want to read Larry Niven’s The Ringworld Throne, in which the aging protagonist, Louis Wu, does one. Other things happen in the book as well, but it’s generally seen as the weakest in the Ringworld saga, despite the fartin’ fuckstick.

If you puff through your piddle, see a doctor. A case study published in the Libyan Journal of Medicine in 2010 concerned a 37-year-old with a few ongoing issues who noticed gas in his urine, and he turned out to have a colovesical fistula (CVF). “Pneumaturia is sometimes the first symptom of CVF and should always raise the suspicion of this rare complication,” concluded the paper’s authors. 

Did this man’s phallus flatus save his life? Who’s to say?

Rarer than fistula-related pneumaturia, but still possible, is spontaneous pneumaturia, in which the bladder is completely intact but air is produced within it. This involves gas-producing bacteria, and in most cases happens to diabetics, as the sugar in their urine feeds the bacteria. This can also sometimes happen as a result of a urinary tract infection.

One group of mostly-healthy people who sometimes find their honkers hiccuping are scuba divers. When you wear a drysuit, you don’t want to pee in it, but swimming really makes you have to pee, so divers have a few options. Some opt for adult diapers, but a lot go for a setup involving a condom catheter, a tube and a valve in the drysuit, which lets urine out into the sea without compromising the integrity of the suit. However, this catheter use can lead to genitourinary infections including pneumaturia — a 2009 paper in the journal Diving And Hyperbaric Medicine suggests improved hygiene on these valves, as well as using a more advanced kind with one-way liquid flow, should reduce instances of post-dive trunk-trumps.

So, there you have it. Sometimes people fart out of their dicks. Just when you think you’ve got the world figured out, it can always surprise you. Maybe there’s hope for us after all.

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