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Men’s Health & Penile Implants.

Men’s Health & Penile Implants

Penile implants are the last resort for men suffering either erectile dysfunction or Peyronie’s disease and are generally recommended if all other treatment has failed.

For men suffering Erectile Dysfunction (ED), they are proposed when all traditional methods have not been successful in achieving an erection. For Peyronie’s Disease (PD) they are prescribed where the curve or deformity is excessive and when non-invasive or minimally invasive treatments including injections and shockwave therapy have not significantly reduced the curvature to the degree where a man can have satisfactory intercourse.

A penile implant is a surgical device that is implanted into a man’s penis, scrotum, and lower abdomen. The most common version consists of two tubes that are fitted in the natural tubes, that run the full length of the penis which fill up with blood when a man gets an erection (corpora cavernosa).

These two artificial tubes are connected to the head of the penis and run the full length to the base. They are then connected to a fluid reservoir situated in the lower abdomen. The final element is a pump that is placed in the scrotum and looks like a third testicle.

An erection is achieved when the pressure is applied on the pump and the fluid passes from the reservoir, up the two artificial tubes, until an erection is completely achieved. The erection stays this way until the pump valve is released and the flued is drained from the penis by squeezing it until it gets back to the flaccid state. During the erect stage a man is able to ejaculate as normal.

Whilst, this procedure means that men who have ED have full erectile function again and men with PD no longer have bent and deformed penis, there are some considerations that men should take into account before pursuing this route.

When a man has a natural erection, he feels the urge and rush of blood entering his penis. In layman’s terms, he is ‘turned on’. With a penile implant is placed inside him, this urge is lost for ever. But on the flip side, the man never has to lose and erection again.

With PD, the penis is shortened to balance both sides and this can lead to a significant shortening of the penis by up to 5 cm and going to the lavatory can take a lot longer than before.

Finally, men will with implants will lose sensation. For some men, they may have lost sensation before they have the operation so it might not be as a great a consideration, but unlike non-invasive treatments like shockwave therapy, which can increase the sensation, with penile implants the reverse is true. What’s more, some men report increased difficulty in achieving ejaculation.

Penile implant surgery is a complex procedure and any man considering this should check on the experience of the surgeons involved. There are a select group of highly experienced urologists that specialise in this technique.

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