Description: This new medical procedure looks like a promising, permanent alternative to medications and other treatments
The Promise of Stent Surgery for Erectile Dysfunction
What is Erectile Dysfunction?
Erectile Dysfunction (ED) is the inability to develop or maintain erection of the penis. ED is a sexual dysfunction commonly known as male impotence. Some of the important causes of ED include cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, neurological problems and even side effects from drugs.
What is stent surgery?
Stents are mesh-like tubes that are made of plastic or metal. If made of metals, these are not detected by metal detectors making them safe to use in any arteries. These stents are like collapsed scaffolding. When inserted into the artery, they expand and stay expanded, thus promoting smooth flow of blood and overall good health.
Stent surgery involves insertion of an artificial tube permanently into an artery to keep it open. The stent improves flow of blood in an artery where drugs may not be effective. Stent surgery or stenting has been successful for treating blocked and collapsed arteries and is now being used for penile arteries to eliminate ED.
How is stent surgery for ED performed?
First, a series of x-rays are taken to see if an injected colored dye shows up in the thinner section of artery in question. Then a stent is inserted in the said artery through the groin. This procedure is slightly different from those used for keeping the arteries around the heart open.
Who benefits from stent surgery for ED?
Stent surgery for ED is beneficial for those men who had ED due to traumatic injury and for those who found drugs ineffective or not as effective as desired. It is estimated that nearly 30% of men suffering from ED could be helped with this procedure. The major benefit is that erection will feel spontaneous rather than medically induced.
What are the risks involved in stent surgery for ED?
Stent surgery for ED is a new medical procedure that has been successfully completed by a few well known hospitals in Europe. The risks are similar to stenting other arteries except that penile arteries are even narrower and increases the risks several times over. Further,not much is known about the long term or side effects of an implanted pelvic stent. Although the stent surgery has the potential for offering promising results, further research is necessary to rule out any complications or any previously undetected problems.