The Three Types of Penile Implants For Erectile Dysfunction
When other treatment options are exhausted, penile implants can be a very effective, permanent solution for those who suffer from impotence. There have been many advances in the field, and the surgery as well as the implants themselves have been improved significantly since being introduced in the early 70s.
Let's take a look at the various options...
Semi-Rigid Malleable Penile Implant
The semi-rigid malleable (flexible) penile implant is the simplest and least expensive impotence device currently available. It consists of two rods that are surgically implanted inside the penis.
Depending on the manufacturer, the rods have an outer coating of silicone, high-density plastic or polyethylene, with a series of positionable segments, along with a metal core. These segments allow for more flexibility of movement.
The result of this type of implant is a permanent erection that can be re-positioned as required.
During sexual activity, the penis is straightened, and afterwards it can be bent downwards close to the body for concealment.
Benefits of the Semi-Rigid Malleable Type
- This implant type is the simplest surgical procedure.
- Insertion of the implant can usually be done during day surgery or as an outpatient procedure.
- It is easy to use and has no mechanical parts.
- Romantic spontaneity is not affected because there is no waiting time for the penis to become erect.
- It is also the least expensive type of penile implant.
Semi-Rigid Implant Precautions
- The penis remains erect at all times, even when it is resting against the body, so concealment under tight clothing may be considered a problem for some men.
- The recovery time is usually 4 to 6 weeks. Many men experience severe penile pain during the recovery period. Medical specialists recommend that all sexual activity be avoided during this period.
- The implant does not alter or enhance the length or width of the penis.
Two-Piece Inflatable Penile Implant
The two-piece inflatable implant consists of two hollow cylinders which are surgically inserted into the penis. A small pump is inserted into the scrotum.
By gently squeezing the scrotum several times, the pump transfers fluid into the cylinders inside the penis, causing the cylinders to inflate and create an erection.
The fluid in the cylinders can be transferred back into the reservoir by gently bending the penis downwards for about 10 seconds.
Benefits of the Two-Piece Implant
- This type creates a natural looking erection.
- It enables the penis to return to a flaccid state and makes concealment easier.
- The surgical procedure to insert the two-piece device is relatively simple and usually only requires day surgery, or as an outpatient.
Two-Piece Implant Precautions
- There are more components than the semi-rigid malleable implant. Therefore, there is a greater risk of post-surgical complications.
- The recovery period is usually 4 to 6 weeks. Many men report severe penile and abdominal pain during the recovery period. It is recommended that sexual activity not resume until after the recovery phase is over.
Three-Piece Inflatable Penile Implant
The three-piece implant has three components. Like the two-piece one, the three-piece one has two hollow cylinders that are surgically implanted into the penis.
A small pump and valve are inserted into the scrotum to transfer fluid into the cylinders, which causes them to inflate and produce an erection.
The third component is a small reservoir containing a sterile solution that is inserted into the lower abdomen. This fluid is pumped into the cylinders in the penis via a series of tubes inside the body.
When the erection is no longer required, the release valve inserted in the scrotum is gently squeezed to release the fluid back into the reservoir located in the lower abdomen.
Benefits of the Three-Piece Implant
- It creates the most authentic looking erection.
- There is no waiting time required, so romantic spontaneity is not lost.
- The device is simple to use and enables the penis to return to a flaccid state after sexual activity has ceased.
Three-Piece Implant Precautions
- This one is more complex than the two-piece and the semi-rigid malleable implant. Therefore, the surgical procedure is more involved and the risk of failure for one of the components is higher.
- Because of the more complex function of the three-piece unit, the cost for the surgical procedure is higher.
- The recovery period is usually 4 to 6 weeks. Many men report severe penile and abdominal pain during the recovery period. It is advisable to avoid any form of sexual activity during recovery.
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