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Shockwave Therapy For Erectile Dysfunction

Shockwave Therapy For Erectile Dysfunction

Introduction

Erectile dysfunction (ED) has been shown to be associated with a number of physical conditions and affects not only physical but also psychosocial health. Currently oral, on-demand phosphodiesterase type 5 inhibitors (PDE5i) are preferred frst line treatment. Though effective, these drugs have limitations and are associated with signifcant non-compliance, side effects and do not reverse the underlying pathology. Non-invasive low intensity shock wave therapy (LISWT) has been shown to signifcantly improve erectile function in men previously PDE5i dependent. We describe our experience and results with this therapy in an Indian population of men with ED.

A “Shocking” New Treatment for Erectile Dysfunction

In some people with kidney stones, low-intensity shockwave therapy (LIST) breaks them up. And in some with heart disease and fractures, LIST coaxes the body to produce new blood vessels that help with healing. Recently, this latter effect has been shown to improve erections in some men with erectile dysfunction (ED). The new vessels bring more blood into the penis, which helps with erections. LIST is the first new therapy for ED since Viagra’s approval 20 years ago. LIST is still experimental, and not yet widely available, but it’s fairly easy to administer, and if you’re a man with ED, it just might help.

The story of LIST for ED began in 2010 in Haifa, Israel, where researchers tried it on 20 men, average age 56. They’d all been diagnosed with vascular ED, that is, the problem involved not damage to the erectile nerves, but poor blood flow into the penis. The men received two LIST treatments a week for three weeks, then they took three weeks off, after which they were retreated. One month after the conclusion of the second treatments, the researchers employed standard measures to analyze the men’s erection function. The results were intriguing. All 20 showed some improvement—no porn-star erection miracles, but greater rigidity and longer duration. The improvements help up for six months and LIST caused no side effects.

Shockwave therapy: An innovative treatment for erectile dysfunction

Preliminary clinical studies have demonstrated that Shockwave therapy may effectively treat ED. Renova–ED is a Low intensity Shockwave (LISW) device which uses low energy shockwave delivered by special device uniquely suited to treat the penis. Our study is aimed at determine the safety and efficacy of this new type of ED treatment. Shockwave therapy appears to increase blood flow to the penis and recruit stem cells that will enable better erections. Men with mild erectile dysfunction who have tried Viagra / Cialis or who have not tried these medications are best candidates for this therapy.

The painless, potent ‘shock’ treatment for men who struggle to perform in bed

Compared to the likes of Viagra, shockwave therapy remains a less mainstream remedy for erectile dysfunction. But some doctors and patients in Singapore are warming to it.

“People might be put off by the word 'shockwave', but there’s nothing to be afraid of. It was painless, there was no discomfort,” he described. “And it is effective. My performance has improved … it’s much better now.”

Despite the name, shockwave therapy actually uses external, low-intensity acoustics to trigger a process that forms new blood vessels, improving blood flow to the nether regions to help enhance the firmness of an erection.

Conclusions

Low intensity shock wave treatment is effective in the short term but treatment efficacy was maintained after 2 years in only half of the patients. In patients with milder forms of erectile dysfunction the beneficial effect is more likely to be preserved.

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