In a nutshell
This study looked at the safety and effectiveness of shockwave therapy for erectile dysfunction (ED). It concluded that shockwave therapy was an effective treatment for ED.
Erectile dysfunction (ED) is when you cannot get or keep an erection firm enough to have intercourse. ED can occur from a physical cause such as disease, injury or side effects of drugs. Emotional issues, psychological issues or mental health issues can also worsen ED symptoms. ED is often treated by lifestyle changes, medications, using a vacuum device (to improve blood flow to the penis) or even surgery.
Shockwave therapy is an ED therapy which is still being investigated. Shockwave therapy tries to restore the ability to have natural erections. It emits a shockwave into the penis and causes the release of factors which increase blood flow. Blood vessels are key to getting and maintaining erections.
Methods & findings
42 men were included in the study. These men were previously taking a type of drug called phosphodiesterase type 5 inhibitors (PDE5-I) to try and ease ED symptoms. The patients were divided into two groups. Group A had shockwave therapy once a week for 6 weeks, totalling 6 sessions. Group B had shockwave therapy twice a week for 6 weeks, totalling 12 sessions.
Patients who had shockwave therapy twice a week for 6 weeks had better sexual function after therapy than those who were treated once a week. 65% of Group B (12 sessions) and 47% of Group A (6 sessions) had erections thta lasted long enough for successful sexual intercourse. There were no reported side effects.
The bottom line
The study concluded that having shockwave sessions twice a week improved sexual function in patients with ED.
The fine print
The authors note that the number of patients included in the study is small. They also not that there was no other treatment in the study to compare the shockwave therapy to. These factors may affect the study's results.
If you are interested in learning more about shockwave therapy to treat ED, contact your doctor.
Published By :
The journal of sexual medicine
Jan 27, 2018
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