Is Masturbation Permissible for Medical Reason? (Shafi’i)

Shafi'i Fiqh

Answered by Shaykh Abdurragmaan Khan

Question: Assalam alaykum,

I have a problem which is somewhat similar to urinary incontinence. The doctor gave me some medicines, and also told me to masturbate three times to clear up congestion in the tract. I was afraid and asked for an alternative to it. He told me to sit in a tub filled with hot water , but that it is less effective. What should I do?

Answer: Wa alaykum al-Salam

What I understand from your question is that you suffer from some type of seminal incontinence and that a doctor has prescribed that regular ejaculation will assist in solving the problem.

If this is the case, then a more plausible option would be conjugal relations if you are married and if not, to consider marriage. If this is not possible, masturbation will be permissible if the following conditions are met:

1. No similar permissible medical solution is to be found.
2. That the action is only performed to the extent prescribed or required.
3. A reliable Muslim doctor of integrity agrees that this is the only effective solution.

This ruling is based on the maxim, “necessity (darurah) declares the impermissible, permissible”. Also, as stated by ‘Izzuddin ibn ‘Abd al-Salam in his Qawa’id, the welfare of good health is preferred over the welfare of abstaining from filth.

And Allah knows best

[Shaykh] Abdurragmaan Khan

Shaykh Abdurragmaan
received ijazah ’ammah from various luminaries, including but not restricted to: Habib Umar ibn Hafiz—a personality who affected him greatly and who has changed his relationship with Allah, Maulana Yusuf Karaan—the former Mufti of Cape Town; Habib ‘Ali al-Mashhur—the current Mufti of Tarim; Habib ‘Umar al-Jaylani—the Shafi‘i Mufti of Makkah; Sayyid Ahmad bin Abi Bakr al-Hibshi; Habib Kadhim as-Saqqaf; Shaykh Mahmud Sa’id Mamduh; Maulana Abdul Hafiz al-Makki; Shaykh Ala ad-Din al-Afghani; Maulana Fazlur Rahman al-Azami and Shaykh Yahya al-Gawthani amongst others.