Dustin Lance, a 32-year-old former inmate from Pittsburg County, California, has sued the authorities claiming he was refused treatment for a painful erection that lasted nearly four days. Lance said he was aroused for at least 91 hours after he gulped down a pill that a fellow inmate gave him. 

His erection started Dec. 16 and he was not taken to a hospital until Dec. 19, The Washington Post reported. He suffered “unbearable pain” and a permanent damage to his phallus, The Daily Star reported, citing court papers. 

The court documents submitted by Lance also claim that instead of getting him medical help, the prison staff “repeatedly mocked him for his condition over the period of days while denying him medical treatment,” which caused Lance to experience “irreparable harm to his penis."

The lawsuit also alleges that a long-lasting erection should have been a cause of alarm for the county officials. “Any person that watches television has almost certainly seen Viagra or Cialis advertisements which tell people to see a doctor for an erection lasting four or more hours,” it says.

The medical condition that Lance is suffering from probably is priapism. According to Mayo Clinic's website, priapism is “a prolonged erection of the penis. The persistent erection continues hours beyond or isn't caused by sexual stimulation. Priapism is usually painful."

The website of the nonprofit medical practice and medical research group based in Rochester, Minnesota, further states, "Although priapism is an uncommon condition overall, it occurs commonly in certain groups, such as people who have sickle cell anemia. Prompt treatment for priapism is usually needed to prevent tissue damage that could result in the inability to get or maintain an erection (erectile dysfunction)." It also claims the condition is most common in men in their 30s.

There are two kinds of priapism — non-ischemic and ischemic. Non-ischemic priapism “usually results from an injury to the penis or perineum.” While in the case of ischemic priapism, “blood flows into the penis but doesn't flow out. The loss of circulation deprives the corpora cavernosa of oxygen and causes a painful, rigid erection. If left untreated, the loss of oxygen can damage erectile tissues, cause the formation of scar tissue, and lead to a permanent loss of function," the website reads. 

Lance, who was booked Dec. 15 into the Pittsburg County Jail in McAlester, Oklahoma, on charges of burglary and possession of a controlled dangerous substance, has sued the Pittsburg County, the county sheriff and others for $5 million, claiming his constitutional and civil rights were violated and that his injury is irreparable. 

Although Lance’s condition is not known yet, his lawyer Jon Williford said Friday he was alive, KTUL ABC 8 reported.