Bring up the topic of erectile dysfunction with your friends or even with your partner, and you might hear some nervous chuckles. Almost invariably, someone will make a crack about the infamous bathtub advertisements, which show couples soaking in clawfoot tubs on the beach or in other unlikely, exotic locales, in clawfoot tubs on the beach or in other unlikely, exotic locales. However, ED isn’t a laughing matter. It can lead to depression, anxiety, poor self-esteem, and self-confidence. ED takes a toll on the relationship, as well. This condition is a stressful one, and it deserves to be taken seriously. One new treatment, shockwave therapy for erectile dysfunction, is doing just that — and improving the lives of countless men and women.
What Exactly Is Shockwave Therapy?
Low-intensity shockwave therapy (LiSWT) is a non-invasive procedure that uses high-energy sound waves to encourage cellular growth and tissue repair.
For patients seeking treatment for erectile dysfunction, shockwave therapy also contributes to increased blood flow by repairing and strengthening the blood vessels found in the penis. A lack of healthy blood flow is the root cause of erectile dysfunction.
Shockwave therapy has been used to speed up the healing of broken bones, injured tendons, torn ligaments, and open wounds since the mid-80s. It’s a relatively new approach for ED.
How Does Shockwave Therapy for Erectile Dysfunction Work?
To treat ED, a healthcare provider will move a wand-like device along the penis. The device emits gentle pulses. By triggering tissue remodeling and improving the flow of blood, these pulses enable a man to achieve an erection that is sufficient for sexual intercourse.
Does It Hurt?
Patients report that shockwave therapy is not painful. Some men do experience a sensation of tingling or light tapping. If you want to err on the side of caution, ask your provider to apply a numbing gel to your penis before the procedure.
This is an outpatient procedure and takes only about 15 minutes.
How Often Will I Have Shockwave Therapy?
Currently, there are official protocols or established recommendations regarding the frequency of shockwave therapy. In 2019, a review and meta-analysis did address the treatment period, however.
A 2019 review and meta-analysis of clinical trials found that the most common treatment plan was twice weekly for three weeks, followed by three weeks without treatments, and another three weeks of treatments.
The same analysis also found that the effects of this treatment generally last about a year. Best of all, there are few, if any, side effects or risks.
How Do I Get Started?
There is no shame in seeking treatment for your ED. You don’t have to be embarrassed. This is a prevalent problem, especially as men begin to age.
Want to learn more about shockwave therapy for erectile dysfunction? Want to find out if you are a good candidate for the procedure? If so, get in touch! We’d be happy to answer any questions you may have.