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Sexual Dysfunction - Treatment Options - Mechanical Methods

Several mechanical methods are options for treating impotence in men:

Vacuum pumps

A man can use a vacuum pump on his penis to expand it temporarily. These mechanical devices, which have been available for several decades, are reported to be effective in about 50 to 75 percent of general patients. However, some men find them awkward or embarrassing. A pump may be useful for men with diabetes who have significant vascular complications and for whom Viagra would not be a choice. While these devices are generally safe, men with diabetes who have nerve damage in the penis must use them with caution.

Constriction rings

This treatment is best for men who can get an erection but lose it before intercourse is completed. This condition, called early detumescence, is caused by blood vessels allowing blood to leave the penis. The rubber rings, available in kits of varying sizes, can be placed at the base of the penis after an erection has occurred. A newer adjustable latex ring called the Actis Venous Flow Controller, manufactured by Vivus, is less expensive than other models and is becoming more popular. Rings sometimes are used in conjunction with other treatments.

Page last updated: September 19, 2019