Erectile dysfunction (ED) involves the inability to obtain or maintain an erection sufficient for sexual activity. It is estimated that one in five – or approximately 30 million American men – have experienced problems with ED. The effects of erectile dysfunction can take a toll – on your mind, body, and intimate relationships. There are, of course, several front-line treatments that can be very effective for many patients, including Sildenafil (Viagra), Tadalafil (Cialis), injections, suppositories, and pumps, but there are also considerations that go along with their use.
Side Effects of Non-Invasive ED Treatments
Oral medications may cause side effects such as headaches, changes in vision, stomach upset, and nasal congestion. Both injections and urethral suppositories risk scar tissue forming in the penis. They can cause minor bleeding and pain, and there is a chance of prolonged erection with injections. Penis pumps may detract from the natural sensation of the penis during sex. Ejaculation is restricted, and there is a possibility of bruising. These options may not be suitable for men with diabetes or some with ED caused by prostate cancer surgery (prostatectomy) or trauma.
When the dysfunction is severe and permanent, these less-invasive treatments simply may not work at all. At this point, many patients believe they have no choice but to live with compromised sexual function for the rest of their lives.
But There Is a True Cure for ED
While there are many ways to manage the symptoms of ED, there is a cure. Penile implant surgery – the surgical implantation of a penile prosthesis that allows a man to create an erection on demand – has been around since the 1970s. Since then, technology has advanced dramatically, and we now have a very elegant solution that truly gives patients their lives back.
About The Penile Prosthesis
A penile prosthesis is appropriate when there is a clear medical cause of ED or when the problem is unlikely to resolve or improve naturally or with other medical treatments. There are two common types of penile implants: semirigid and inflatable.
Semirigid Penile Implants
Semirigid or malleable penile implants consist of two flexible rods implanted into the shaft of the penis. With this implant, the penis is always firm and controlled manually. When ready for sexual activity, the patient positions it away from the body in an erect position; at all other times, it is kept bent toward the body.
Inflatable Penile Implants
This implant offers the most natural feeling, both when erect as well as when flaccid.
The most popular type of inflatable implant involves three pieces that include:
- A saline (salt water) balloon-type reservoir implanted in the pelvic area.
- Pump and release valve implanted invisibly in the scrotum.
- Inflatable cylinders implanted within the shaft of the penis.
To achieve and maintain an erection, the patient simply presses the pump repeatedly, which draws the fluid from the reservoir to fill the inflatable cylinders within the penis. The erection lasts for as long as desired. The fluid is drained similarly – by pressing the release valve in the scrotum; the fluid returns to the reservoir until the next time it’s needed.
Reasons to consider a penile implant include the following:
- Penile implants give patients with irreversible erectile dysfunction a chance to enjoy active and satisfying sex life.
- Penile implants represent a discreet way to treat erectile dysfunction, with no outward sign of the device.
- Implants are covered by many private and public medical insurances.
- Minimal recovery time is needed (usually 4-6 weeks to become sexually active again)
- A natural-feeling solution. A penile implant does not affect the way the erection feels, and it is designed to mimic a natural erection.
- Nerves within the penis are spared to allow patients full enjoyment of sex.
- High patient satisfaction rates. Research has shown that over 93% of men are moderately or completely satisfied with their implant versus injections and medications, which have far lower average satisfaction rates at 40%-51%
What to Expect with Penile Implant Surgery
Notably, your ability to orgasm and ejaculate is not affected by penile implant surgery. So, your post-op penile sensations are like what you experienced before. Penile implant surgery is safe, minimally invasive, and recommended for men for whom other methods of ED treatment fail to work. In some cases, penile implant surgery is recommended to treat Peyronie’s disease, a significant curvature of the penis that can occur along with ED.
Possible considerations we will discuss during your consultation will include:
- Previous penile surgeries
- The size of the penis, glans (tip), and or scrotum
- Body type
- Presence of any deformity (Peyronie’s disease)
- Previous pelvic surgeries or injuries
- Sexual activity and desire
- Overall health
- Insurance coverage and possible cash pay options
How Effective Are the Implants?
About 90-95 percent of penile implants produce erections suitable for intercourse. Satisfaction rates with the prosthesis are very high, and on average over 90% percent of men are satisfied with the results and say they would choose the surgery again.
Penile Implant Resources
HOW TO ACTIVATE YOUR AMS 800 REMOTELY
HOW TO ACTIVATE YOUR AMS 700 REMOTELY
- AMS 700 Inflatable Penile Implant Series Step-by-Step Brochure
- AMS 700 Penile Implant: Demonstration of Inflation and Deflation Video
- AMS 700 Penile Prosthesis Animation Video
Penile Implant Specialist in Concord & Charlotte, NC
Dr. Richard Natale has specialized in prosthetic implants for over a decade and is among the highest-volume implant surgeons in the Southeast US, having performed hundreds of these surgeries. As a result of his outstanding experience in this specialized area of urology, Dr. Natale has been recognized at national meetings for AMS/ Boston Scientific. This company designed the original penile prosthesis and is the leading manufacturer of these implants worldwide. This is a special honor bestowed upon very few urologists in the country.
We encourage you to schedule a consultation with Dr. Natalie to learn more about getting your intimate life back after ED. Call (704) 786-5131 or request an appointment now.