After 20 months, Henry Wolf decided to contact a lawyer instead, claiming that the seat on his BMW motorcycle gave him an erection lasting nearly two years. The San Francisco Chronicle reports that Wolf filed a lawsuit against BMW North American and Corbin-Pacific claiming that the "ridged seat" on his 1993 motorcycle left him with mental and emotional anguish after allegedly causing an extreme case of priapism, also known as a long-lasting erection.
Wolf "has been experiencing continuing problems since his motorcycle ride," attorney Vernon Bradley of Sausalito wrote in the lawsuit, which was filed in California Superior Court in San Francisco last Thursday. "He is now unable to engage in sexual activity, which is causing him substantial emotional and mental anguish."
Bradley said the alleged case of priapism began after Wolf took a four-hour ride on his motorcycle.
As those erectile dysfunction commercials so regularly note, priapism can technically be onset after just four hours and is generally considered an emergency medical condition. The condition is named after the Greek fertility god Priapus, who is commonly depicted as having an unusually large erection.
According to USA Today, Wolf is seeking monetary damages for lost wages, medical expenses, emotional distress and "general damage."
The All About Bikes blog notes that there have been several instances alleging erectile dysfunction as a result of narrow motorcycle seats but that this appears to be the first case where a medical condition with the exact opposite effect has been alleged.
Florida radio station WWJ Newsradio 950 spoke with Michigan Institute of Urology's Dr. Michael Luts who said there is "no medical data" to support Wolf's claim, again citing the evidence that riding a motorcycle for an extended period of time typically works against the body's ability to achieve sexual arousal.
"It's been long-known that compression of the neurovascular supply to the penis—if it's compressed for a period of time, whether it be on a bicycle seat or some other device—it can actually cause prolonged numbness of the genitalia," Lutz told the station.
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