Nobody likes to talk about erectile dysfunction. Thirty years ago, the medical community had nothing to offer men with this disease and blamed erectile dysfunction on the man himself often sending him for psychiatric evaluation. How the times have changed for the better.
Once Viagra hit the market a new era in the treatment of erectile dysfunction began to the benefit of millions of men and their partners. What we’ve learned since then though is that while Viagra (which is now generic and cheap!) works well, the medicine eventually fails in all men as the underlying disease (usually poor arterial blood flow) worsens.
Currently, the best treatment option for men who no longer respond to Viagra is injection therapy. I realize it sounds crazy but there exists a combination of drugs called Tri-mix which can be safely administered at home by a patient and which creates an erection in most men. There are certainly risks including infection and priapism (an erection that lasts for more the four hours) but usually it works very well.
A new treatment option though is emerging and is receiving lots of press coverage so I thought I would discuss it.
GAINSWave is a non-invasive soundwave-based therapy that in initial studies shows promise. It involves using high frequency low intensity soundwaves applied directly to the penis to increase blood flow. The procedure is not painful (I’m being honest here) and involves between 6 and 12 treatments done in an approved provider’s clinic. It is FDA approved but it is NOT covered by insurance and can cost well over 3000 dollars.
GAINSWave is not without its detractors. The studies to date are limited in their scope, numbers and design. Reported side effects are minimal but long-term data on treatment results and potential complications is limited. Further the business model that the company is choosing to employ where they do not seek coverage by insurance companies and keep it as a cash only business bothers some providers as it appears to limit the treatment to well-off patients only.
There are currently no urologists in Colorado Springs providing this treatment though there are providers in Denver. If anyone has questions about this treatment or treatment for erectile dysfunction in general, please call my clinic at (719) 531-7007 and ask for an appointment as I’m happy to sit down and discuss all options in a private setting.