How Is Erectile Dysfunction Treated?

Your doctor can offer a number of treatments for ED. You may want to talk with your partner about which treatment fits you best as a couple. Most people want the simplest treatment possible. You may need to try a number of treatments before you find the one that works best for you.
Lifestyle Changes

For some men, the answer is to make a few lifestyle changes. Getting more exercise, quitting smoking, losing weight, and cutting back on alcohol solve some erection problems.
Counseling

Even though most cases of ED have a physical cause, counseling can help couples deal with the emotional effects. Some couples find that counseling adds to the medical treatment by making their relationship stronger.

Oral Medication

Since 1998, doctors have been able to prescribe a pill to treat ED. Current brands include Viagra, Levitra, and Cialis. If your doctor finds that your health is generally good, you may be given a prescription for one of these drugs. You should not take any of these pills to treat ED if you take any of the heart medicines called nitrates. All of the ED pills work by increasing blood flow to the penis. They do not cause automatic erections. Talk with your doctor about when to take the pill. You may need to experiment to find out how soon the pill takes effect.

Even if taking a pill solves your erection problem, you should still take care of the other health issues that may have caused your ED.
Injection

Taking a pill doesn’t work for everybody. Many men use medicines that go directly into the penis. Caverject and Edex are injected into the shaft of the penis with a needle. MUSE is a tiny pill inserted into the urethra at the tip of the penis. These medicines usually cause an erection within minutes. These medications can be very successful, even if other treatments fail.
Vacuum device

Another way to create an erection is to use a vacuum tube. The penis is inserted in the tube. As air is pumped out of the tube, the volume of the penis expands. Blood then flows into the penis and makes it larger. A specially designed rubber band is then placed at the base of the penis to keep the blood from flowing out.

Penile Implant

If the other options fail, some men need surgery to treat ED. A surgeon can implant a device that inflates or unbends to create an erection. Implanted devices do not interfere with the way sex feels.

This operation cannot be reversed. Once a man has a penile implant, he must use a device to have an erection. Talk with your doctor about the advantages and possible drawbacks of having a penile implant.

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