Surgery is an option when all other efforts to restore or bypass your erectile dysfunction have failed. In fact, there are several possible alternatives that will permit you to have satisfactory sexual intercourse.
Restoring erections is often sufficient to restore complete sexual function.
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This prosthesis (implant) consists of one or two bendable rods that are inserted into the penis. Once installed and healed, the penis and the prosthesis can be bent into position. It can be placed upward for intercourse or downward for clothing and urination.
There are three pieces to this device:
- A balloon-like cylinder that fits into the penis
- A pump that is placed into the scrotum
- A reservoir of liquid that is placed nearby, inside the pelvis
The penis is normally limp until the pump is repeatedly squeezed, filling the balloon from the reservoir. After intercourse, the balloon in the penis can be deflated.
Description of the Procedure:
The device is implanted under general or regional anesthesia. An incision is made between your penis and scrotum so that the device can be inserted. Additional incisions may be made to insert the accessory parts in their proper positions.
If circulation is reduced to your penis due to vascular disease (usually following a traumatic injury to the penis), reconstruction of your arteries may restore erectile function. This is complex surgery which is performed only in a few hospitals in the US. Occasionally, in these rare cases, the vascular defect can be repaired. This will help to avoid surgical reconstruction.
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Erectile Dysfunction. American Urological Association Foundation website. Available at:
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Clinical Evidence. 2005;13:1120-1127.
Last reviewed September 2012 by Adrienne Carmack, MD
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.
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