Innovative treatments for erectile dysfunction
Lifestyle changes, medications and other traditional treatments are not the only solutions for men with erectile dysfunctions.
Innovative treatments for erectile dysfunctions include options such as external prosthesis, shockwave therapy, platelet-rich plasma injection and stem cell therapy.
External penile prostheses
External penile prostheses effectiveness as alternative treatments for erectile dysfunction has not been largely studied. Satisfaction with their use depends on both partners, and extensive counseling should be provided to maximize success rates.
Shockwave therapy results in significant improvements in blood flow and in erectile function. Moreover, it can enhance the response to oral medications. Improvements in erectile function are evident 6 months following treatment, that is well tolerated. However, the response seems to decrease over time, and more severe cases or the presence of comorbidities could be associated with higher rates of treatment failure. Finally, more research on possible side effects is needed.
Platelet-rich plasma intracavernosal injections
Platelet-rich plasma intracavernosal injections are based on platelets producing growth factors involved in the growth of new blood vessels. Preliminary studies suggest improvements in erectile function without serious adverse effects.
Stem cell therapy
Stem cell therapy acts via regeneration of nerves and blood vessels, and other specific mechanisms still to characterize. Studies conduced in human have demonstrated its tolerability, safety, and efficacy in the treatment of erectile dysfunction. It could be combined to other approaches, particularly shockwave therapy to promote the growth of new blood vessels and reduce cell destruction.