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Why Surgery For Erectile Dysfunction Is Not Always Recommended

May 31, 2008
Erectile dysfunction, better known as ED, refers to a man's inability to either attain or maintain an erection in which to satisfactory perform sexual intercourse. This condition has been shown to affect over 20 million men in the United States. While there are many causes for this condition, there are also many treatment options which are available.

There are several surgical options which can be tried to correct this condition, however most doctors will only recommend surgery after all attempts at non-surgical treatments have failed to treat the physical possibilities and that the patient has tried counseling to deal with possible psychological factors which could be causing an effect.

Surgery is almost never recommended for patients under the age of 40. The only exception would be for the small number of men who have experienced some kind of traumatic injury which is having a negative effect on the flow of blood to the penis. This surgery corrects the blood vessels, increases the flow of blood to the penis and thus allows the patient to obtain and maintain an erection.

There are two major types of surgery which can be performed to treat erectile dysfunction problems. These are penile implants and as mentioned above surgery to correct penile blood vessels.

Penile implants come in three main types of cylinders, rigid, semi-rigid and inflatable. These cylinders are inserted into the penis and replace the spongy tissue that fills with blood that causes the erection to occur. These implants come in many different lengths and diameters to match the physical make up of the man.

The rigid and semi-rigid implants always remain firm; the semi-rigid cylinders allow the penis to be bent depending on the needs of the man at the time; it can be bent back towards the body when clothed to conceal the implant or outward if preparing for sex. The inflatable implant contains cylinders which are hollow and remain empty during normal activities.

In order for a male to achieve an erection, these cylinders need to be pumped full of a saline solution which is stored in a reservoir which is implanted in the lower abdomen. A release valve, usually implanted into the scrotum, is used to drain the saline solution from the cylinders and back into the reservoir.

Implant surgery is usually done using a general anesthesia, although some doctors now use only a regional anesthesia. For inflatable implants, incisions are made into the penis, the lower abdomen and the scrotum.

There are two main types a two chamber, which is a cylinder in the penis and the reservoir and release valve in the scrotum, and the three-chamber, which has the reservoir in the abdomen and the release valve in the scrotum. The three-chamber has been proven to be more reliable implant, however the surgery is slightly more complicated and recovery could be longer.

Surgery can also be used to repair the blood vessels for men with erection problems. There are two main types of surgical procedures; venous ligation and penile revascularization.

Venous ligation is selected when it can be identified which veins are not working properly. This surgery is performed when it is determined that the veins in the penis are not properly constricting, thus allowing the blood to drain out too quickly. These veins are tied off, reducing the rate of flow and allowing an erection to be maintained.

Penile revascularization is usually done on younger men that have experienced an injury that is having a negative affect on the blood flow into and out of the penis. A transplant of blood vessel, usually from the abdomen, is used to bypass the damaged portions of the artery, thus returning blood flow to normal.
About the Author
The most frequently asked questions about erectile disfunction are answered at one website. Learn the common causes and best natural tratements for ED at http://www.erectiledisfunctioncausesandtreatment.com
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