Erectile Dysfunction (ED, Impotence) (cont.)

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Can low testosterone level be replaced?

Because of potential adverse effects and complex metabolism, the use of testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) is limited to men with symptoms of erectile dysfunction and a testosterone level of less than 200 nanogram per deciliter. Preparations available in the U.S. are topical, injectable, and transbuccal (placing inside mouth between the cheek and upper gum) testosterone. Oral preparations are not available in the U.S.

Common side effects of testosterone replacement therapy include local irritations, prostate enlargement, breast tissue enlargement, aggravation of breast and prostate cancers, depression, elevation of red blood cell count (polycythemia), or worsening of congestive heart failure.

Vacuum devices

What are vacuum devices?

Mechanical vacuum devices cause an erection by creating a vacuum around the penis that draws blood into the penis, engorging it, and expanding it. The devices have three components:

  1. a plastic cylinder, in which the penis is placed;
  2. a pump, which draws air out of the cylinder;
  3. an elastic band, which is placed around the base of the penis, to maintain the erection after the cylinder is removed and during intercourse by preventing blood from flowing back into the body (see figure 2).
Vacuum Devices Illustration - Erectile Dysfunction (ED)

One variation of the vacuum device involves a semi-rigid rubber sheath that is placed on the penis and remains there after attaining erection and during intercourse.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 4/3/2014

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