Nonsurgical Treatment of Erectile Dysfunction (cont.)
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How Does Penile Injection Therapy Treat Erectile Dysfunction?
Penile injection therapy, intracavernous injection, involves the injection of a vasodilator (a chemical that relaxes arteries to increase blood flow) into the penis. Penile injected therapy is recognized as the most effective nonsurgical treatment for erectile dysfunction. However, due to the invasive nature, it is often used in men who have failed or have contraindications to other treatments such as oral therapies.
Papaverine, a drug that produces vasodilatation (widening of the blood vessels), was shown to produce erections when injected directly into the penis. Soon afterward, other vasodilators were demonstrated to be effective as an erectile dysfunction treatment.
The use of injection therapy requires being taught how to properly inject the medication, determination of the best dose, and monitoring for side effects. It is recommended that one inject on the side of the penis at the base and to alternate sides. Injection therapy should be used no more frequently than once every 24 hours. Individuals on blood thinners must be careful with use of injection therapy.
Side effects include the following:
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 8/17/2017
Pamela I. Ellsworth, MD
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