Penile Prosthesis is one of several treatments for men with erectile dysfunction that is a very effective treatment option. Penile prostheses are safe and have been used for several years and are continually being improved. Patients have several different types of prostheses to choose from and your prosthetic urologist will help you make the decision that is best for you. The surgeons and nurses at Urology Centers of Alabama are committed to providing a high level of care to men with erectile dysfunction.
Semi-Rigid Penile Prostheses
A semi-rigid penile prosthesis (SRPP) is the simplest type of penile prosthesis. This device takes the form of a malleable, bendable rod. Two of the rods are placed into the penis at the time of surgery. The devices are simple and are have proven ability to produce a rigid erection during intercourse. The risk of infection and significant bleeding are low.
Inflatable Penile Prosthesis
The inflatable penile prosthesis (IPP) is the most commonly used device at Urology Centers of Alabama. The three piece IPP has two inflatable cylinders that are placed into the penis, a pump that is shaped much like the end of your thumb is placed into the scrotum and a reservoir that holds sterile saline is placed into the abdomen. All three of these components are placed through a single incision that is either in the scrotum or just above the base of the penis. The incisions are about 2-3 inches in length and are sutured using stitches that will dissolve on their own.
Benefits of the Inflatable Penile Prosthesis
The main benefit of the IPP is that it provides the most natural erection for the patient and his partner. In the deflated state the penis is soft and when the patient desires an erection he compresses the pump in the scrotum causing fluid to move from the reservoir into the inflatable cylinders. This produces the rigid erection. A penile implant is not visible to anyone else and it is a completely contained device within the patient’s body. The presence of the penile implant does not change urination, sensation or orgasm/ejaculation. The surgery to place an IPP takes around 45 minutes. This procedure is occasionally an out-patient procedure, but most of the time patients are kept overnight for observation.
Risk Factors for IPP
The risk of infection is very low and the IPP is actually impregnated with antibiotics to further reduce the potential for infection. The risk of severe bleeding is less than 1% in men who are not taking blood thinners. A prescription for antibiotics and pain medicine is given to the patient at the time of discharge.
After the Surgery
A patient can go back to work between one and two weeks depending on the kind of work they do. Patients with more strenuous work activities can return to work closer to two weeks. Your prosthetic surgeon will help determine when to go back to work following the surgery. Patients can begin use of the inflatable implant about 5-6 weeks after surgery though we instruct the patient in how to inflate/deflate the device starting at 2-3 weeks after surgery.