In a nutshell
This study aimed to assess how long low-intensity shockwave therapy (LIST) was effective in treating erectile dysfunction. The study found that LIST was only effective in half of the treated patients after 2 years.
Erectile dysfunction (ED – difficulty achieving and maintaining an erection) is a common problem among men. This can be caused by poor blood flow to the penis. Low-intensity shockwave therapy (LIST) involves delivering a small amount of electricity to the penis in order to improve blood flow and erections. The long-term effectiveness of LIST is still under investigation.
Methods & findings
156 patients who underwent LIST were included in this study. 99 (63.5%) were successful at 1 month. However, only 53 (53.5%) still saw improvement from LIST after 2 years. Only 40.8% of patients with severe ED who saw a benefit at 1 month maintained that benefit after 2 years.
All patients with severe ED and diabetes lost the effect of LIST during the 2-year follow-up. Patients with milder forms of ED without diabetes had a 76% chance of maintaining benefit from LIST after 2 years.
The bottom line
The study concluded that low intensity shockwave treatment for erectile dysfunction was effective in the short term, but remained effective only in about half of the patients after 2 years follow-up.
The fine print
The study notes that there is limited data on medium-term follow up and some issues with data collection.
Published By :
Journal of Urology
Feb 22, 2018
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