At Temple Health, our urologists perform penile implant procedures, an advanced option to treat erectile dysfunction. A penile implant, also known as a penile prosthesis, is a device implanted into the penis to help a man with erectile dysfunction achieve an erection.
Penile implants are typically recommended only when erectile dysfunction drugs are not effective or cannot be tolerated. A penile implant can also be an option when a penis pump is not effective.
What Is a Penile Implant?
There are two types of penile implants: inflatable implants and semi-rigid rod implants.
- An inflatable penile prosthesis consists of a cylinder and a pump that are surgically implanted into the penis. The cylinder and pump are connected to a fluid reservoir placed inside the groin. When a man wishes to obtain an erection, he activates the pump to fill the cylinder with fluid, thereby extending the penis to an erect state.
- A semi-rigid rod implant allows the penis to be bent upward for sexual activity. This type of device always remains firm.
Penile implants are not recommended if you have:
- An infection (such as a urinary tract infection), unless it is treated beforehand
- Erectile dysfunction related to reversible issues, such as relationship problems
- Uncontrolled diabetes, due to the higher risk of complicated infections
While a penile implant can help you achieve an erection, it does not affect sexual desire or physical sensations. Penile implants do not make the penis longer and in some cases, it may appear shorter when erect than it was previously.
When to Talk to Your Doctor
If you are unable to get or maintain an erection firm enough for sexual intercourse, you may have erectile dysfunction (ED), or impotence. Erectile dysfunction can be caused by:
- Low self-confidence
- Psychological stress
- Relationship problems
- Underlying health issues, such as uncontrolled diabetes, heart disease or high blood pressure
- Long term smoking and drug use
While it’s understandable you may be reluctant to talk to your doctor about ED, it’s important to consult a urologist if:
- ED is causing a sexual problem for you and/or your partner
- You have heart disease, diabetes or another condition that could cause ED
- You experience other symptoms during episodes of ED that seem to be unrelated
Is a Penile Implant Right for You?
Temple Health’s board-certified urologists specialize in the medical and surgical management of all urologic disorders and diseases – from routine to the most complex – including erectile dysfunction. Our team is highly experienced in treating erectile dysfunction with traditional medical therapies as well as with more advanced therapies, such as penile implants.
There are several potential treatment options for erectile dysfunction, including popular oral medications and penile prostheses. A consultation with a Temple Health urologist is the first step towards diagnosing the root cause of erectile dysfunction and developing an effective treatment plan.