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Hi, I'm Dr. Nicholas Donin for About.com, and today I'm going to tell you about the treatments for impotence.Impotence refers to erectile dysfunction, the inability for a male to achieve or maintain an erection sufficient for satisfactory sexual performance. If you believe you have erectile dysfunction, please make sure to consult a physician before pursuing any treatments. Causes for erectile dysfunction include metabolic, endocrine, neurologic, and psychological disorders. Medications, trauma, and effects from surgery can also lead to impotence. In many cases, treating these underlying conditions results in improvement in erectile function. Evaluation by a physician is the best way to determine which of these factors may be contributing to a person's impotence.There are 2 main categories of treatments for erectile dysfunction: medical and surgical. First, let's talk about the medical treatments. Most medical treatments for impotence work by relaxing the arteries that supply blood flow to the erectile tissues in the penis. Many commonly used pills, such as Sildenafil, Vardenafil, and Tadalafil, work by improving blood flow to the penis. There are also urethral suppositories, which are tiny dissolving tablets that are placed into the end of the urethra. Alprostadil suppositories are one example. All of these medications have different efficacy and side effects, and not all will work the same for every patient.Next, let's talk about surgical treatments. Surgical treatment for erectile dysfunction generally involves implanting a device into the shaft of the penis that allows sufficient rigidity for sexual intercourse. Some of these devices are malleable rods that are placed in the penis, and allow the user to bend his penis away from his body in order to have sexual intercourse. Other devices utilized a pump system, in which an inflatable implant in the penis allows the patient to pump up the penis for sexual activity, and then deflate the penis afterwards.
Thanks for watching. For more information, please visit About.com.
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