Researchers have continuously debated the phenomena of female ejaculation, often referred to as “squirting.” Some proposed it was not real, while others suggested it was simply urine (i.e., pee). To test this idea, researchers Salama et al. (2014) conducted a study to understand the contents of this fluid. Their study aimed first to explore the biochemical nature of squirting and second to examine the presence of a build-up of liquid in the pelvic region that may help explain the occurrence of female ejaculation .
Seven women participated in the study. The participants underwent three stages of testing before, during, and after sexual activity.
To begin, everyone had an internal ultrasound performed with a vaginal probe to examine the bladder after voluntarily emptying their bladders. This voluntary voided urine sample is the BSU sample (before sexual stimulation urine).
Another internal ultrasound was performed after participants were left alone and had time to become sexually aroused.
Lastly, an internal ultrasound was performed directly after the participant had climaxed. A fluid sample was then taken from the fluid emitted during orgasm and labelled sample S; another emptied bladder sample was taken after sexual completion and labelled ASU (after sexual stimulation urine).
In all samples (BSU, S, and ASU), concentrations of urea, creatinine, and uric acid were found .
Urea: the end product of metabolic breakdown and is expelled from the body in urine .
Creatine: normal waste product expelled through urine that is produced every day during movement and digesting meat .
Uric acid: chemical created when the body breaks down substances called purines and is expelled in urine .
Interestingly, human urine is composed primarily of water (95%). The rest is urea (2%), creatinine (0.1%), uric acid (0.03%) . Therefore, the contents of all samples in Salamal et al.’s 2014 study, including the fluid emitted during female ejaculation, are urine.
However, one component was found in sample (S) and the post-orgasm sample (ASU) that was not in the BSU. This was prostate-specific antigen (PSA). Cis-men create this secretion from their prostate gland, whereas cis-women create PSA in their breasts (Yu & Berkel, 1999). In the initial urine test before sexual stimulation, PSA was undetectable for all participants except one. For most women, PSA became detectable in their female ejaculate sample (S) and remained detectable in urine analysis after sexual stimulation (ASU).
When examining the ultrasounds taken before, during, and after stimulation, researchers found that the bladder would refill during sexual stimulation. The third and final ultrasound after female ejaculation would show that the bladder would again be empty. This, along with the biochemical makeup of all the fluid samples, led researchers to believe that squirting is, in fact, urine secretion. These findings are supported by a study by Pastor and Chmel (2018). They stated that squirting is defined as orgasm-induced urination. A similar study completed by Goldberg et al. (1983) analyzed the ejaculates of six women and reported that the samples did not differ in composition from urine collected prior to orgasm.
Salamla et al. (2014) concluded that the present data based on ultrasound bladder monitoring and biochemical analyses indicated that squirting essentially is the involuntary emission of urine during sexual activity. In addition, a minuscule amount of prostate secretion antigen (PSA) in the emitted fluid .
Take away message:
· It could be argued that because there are traces of prostate secretion antigen in the female ejaculation fluid, it is biochemically different from urine.
· However, the bladder ultrasounds performed by Salamla et al. (2014) are interesting, considering the bladder began to refill during sexual arousal and was again seen as empty after orgasm.
While this area of scientific exploration has continued to broaden our understanding of female sexual response, it remains important to remember that sex can be an overall positive experience. A person’s sexual abilities and experiences should not hinder them from feeling confident and enjoying the experience. In a society that often directs shame towards women’s sexual experiences, it is important that those who do experience female ejaculation do not feel embarrassed or ashamed of doing so. It is called involuntary urine secretion for a reason. Perhaps if you feel self-conscious, you could put a towel down or engage in sexual intercourse or self-pleasure in the shower. Sex is about exploration, pleasure, and enjoying the experience. While it is essential to continue to work towards a deeper scientific understanding, we do not want to be contributing to shame directed towards women. Whether you identify as a woman who ejaculates or engages sexually with a woman who ejaculates, it should be celebrated for what it is, a sign of great pleasure.
*female/woman refers to individuals who were assumed female at birth and have internal reproductive organs (e.g., uterus, ovaries) although not all may identify with those terms, they are used in this article for clarity purposes and to ensure accessibility of the post.
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2. Fletcher, J. (2019). What to Know About Urine Tests For Creatinine. https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/ articles/326998#:~:text=Creatinine%20is%20a %20normal%20waste,or%20problems%20with%20the%20kidneys
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