Erectile dysfunction (ED) is characterised by a man’s inability to develop or sustain an erection during sexual intercourse. In a penile implant procedure, a medical device is inserted within the penis to allow men who have erectile dysfunction, to develop an erection. It is also known as a Penile Prosthesis Implantation procedure. A Penile Implant procedure is performed for men who suffer from erectile dysfunction.
How a penile implant surgical procedure is performed?
The Penile Implant surgical procedure is performed in the following manner:
- The procedure may be performed under general or spinal anaesthesia
- A catheter (tube) is inserted into the urethra (the urinary tube)
- An incision is made on the base of the penis and spongy tissue (two columns called corpora cavernosa) identified. Cylinders are implanted in the spongy tissue.
- Depending on the type of prosthesis used, a pump and valve are inserted in the scrotum (the bag-like sac that contains the testicles) either with/without a fluid reservoir in the abdomen
- The incision is then sutured
A urologist performs the penile implant procedure. It may take up to an hour for the procedure to complete.
Preparations needed before a penile implant surgical procedure
Diagnostic lab tests required before a penile implant surgical procedure
- The physician may evaluate the individual’s medical history to gain a comprehensive knowledge of the overall health status of the patient including information related to the medications that are being currently taken
- Some medications increase a person’s chances of bleeding and it may be recommended to discontinue them for a period of time, before the procedure is performed
- Blood tests may be performed to determine if there is a bleeding tendency or any other medical conditions that prevents the person from undergoing the procedure
- Inform the physician if you are allergic to any local anaesthetics, lidocaine, etc.
- Avoid application of any cosmetics, deodorant, or topical medicines on the area, prior to the procedure
- It is advisable to quit smoking and the use of any nicotine based products, for a while, before the surgery
- Consumption of alcoholic drinks must also be avoided for a period of time, as instructed
- The patient must avoid eating or drinking at least 8 hours prior to the surgical procedure, depending on when the procedure is arranged
- For persons suffering from diabetes, it is important that the blood sugar stays within the normal range if not their diabetologist may have to control blood sugar by recommending insulin or a combination of oral medicines
Before a penile implant procedure, the patient has to undergo certain tests, such as:
Risks and complications during penile implant surgical procedure
The possible risks or complications that may arise during the penile implant surgery are:
Risks and complications after penile implant surgical procedure
The possible risks and complications that may arise after a penile implant are:
Post-operative care needed after penile implant surgical procedure
- Excessive bleeding
- Infection in the surgical wound
- Urinary retention
- Rejection of the penile implants
- Skin or urethra erosion
- Mechanical failure of the penile implant
At home, the following post-operative care is recommended after a penile implant procedure:
- Slowly resume daily activities as early as possible, which aids in a faster recovery
- Resume showering and keep the wound clean and dry. Gently wash the surgical wound with an unscented soap
- The penis might have to be positioned by pushing it up onto the abdomen during healing, to prevent it from gaining any unwanted curvature
- Complete the course of prescribed medication, under advice of the physician
- Take antibiotic medications to help combat or prevent infection, as advised by your physician
- Avoid all activities that are physically strenuous for about 2 weeks after surgery, or follow the physician’s advice
- Resume driving only after 1-2 days of being discharged from the healthcare facility, or when advised by your physician
- Avoid sex till complete healing has taken place (under advise by the physician)