A 33-year-old man told doctors he had injected himself with his own semen to treat lower-back pain.

In a report published in the Irish Medical Journal (IMJ), the patient presented at Tallaght University Hospital in Dublin complaining of severe and sudden onset lower back pain.

He told hospital staff he had been lifting a heavy steel object and his pain had become progressively worse since then.

A subsequent physical examination was carried out on the patient's upper and lower limbs, which revealed swelling on his right arm.

It was then the man disclosed that he had intravenously injected his own semen in an attempt to treat his back pain. The IMJ report said he devised the "cure" independent of any medical advice.

The man also revealed that he had injected himself once a month for 18 months using a needle he had bought online.

An x-ray of the arm showed subcutaneous emphysema and oedema - excess fluid and air under the skin. Doctors then began intravenous antimicrobial treatment.

This patient’s back pain improved over the course of his hospital stay and he opted to discharge himself without availing of an incision and drainage of the "local collection".

The report outlined how a review of online medical material, as well as a wider internet search, found no cases of intravenous semen injection into humans.

The IMJ said it was the first reported case of semen injection for use as a medical treatment.

It added that the case also demonstrated the risks involved with medical experimentation prior to extensive clinical research.