Indications for inflatable penile implants
Penile Implants are used to treat Erectile Dysfunction (ED). They provide physical support to the penis so that the patient can achieve an erection.
Inflatable implants are slightly more complicated to use than the semi-rigid implants. However, what they lack in simplicity they more than makeup for in functionality. As the name suggests, inflatable implants provide the patient with an erection when they are inflated.
How does the 2-piece Inflatable Penile Implant work?
The two-piece is composed of two cylinders that are surgically placed in the penis. These cylinders are then attached to a tube that is connected to the combined reservoir and pump unit. The reservoir contains saline which is delivered to the cylinders by the pump. This reservoir-pump combo is placed inside the scrotum; therefore there are no parts placed within the lower abdomen, and the surgery is less complicated as compared to the three-piece penile implant.
When the patient is ready for sexual activity, he presses the pump, which then delivers the saline from the reservoir into the cylinders resulting in inflation of the penis causing an erection. When the patient is finished, he presses the deflator valve located at the bottom of the pump, which then delivers the saline back into the reservoir causing the penis to deflate and return to its normal, flaccid state.
Manufacturers of 2-piece penile implants
The most common type of 2-piece prosthesis is created by American Medical Systems, Inc. (AMS). Antibiotic devices help reduce infection rates dramatically in patients who have penile implant surgery. All AMS models are coated with antibiotic to help reduce infection. Ambicor is the name of the penile implant model created by AMS and is an excellent option for men who only want their prosthesis to be placed in the penis and scrotum. A study was done in 1999-2004 which showed that 85% of patients were satisfied with the Ambicor implant.
Advantages of using 2-piece inflatable penile implants
By far the most significant benefit of using the inflatable devices is the ability to return to a flaccid state after sexual activity. With the simple push of the deflator valve, the patient can deflate his penis, which produces a much more natural feel and look as compared to the semi-rigid implant which prevents a return to a flaccid state. Besides some small scarring located on the underside of the penis and the scrotum, the inflatable implants are discreet and undetectable to the naked eye. Patients report that there are no changes to the sensation and ability to ejaculate with the outfitting of the inflatable implant.
Disadvantages of using 2-piece inflatable penile implants
However, there are some disadvantages to using the inflatable implants. Since the two-piece implant reservoir is comparatively smaller, there may not be enough saline in the reservoir-pump combo unit to produce a full erection as compared to the three-piece repository. Complication rates also tend to be higher with the inflatable implants due in part to the multiple different units that could malfunction individually.
If you would like to know more about how penile implants can benefit you and your partner, contact us today at 212-541-6239 and schedule your appointment. To find out more about penile implants, visit our website at fifthavenueurology.com.
Penile prosthesis surgery in the management of erectile dysfunction
Sadeghi-Nejad H., Fam M.
(2013) Arab Journal of Urology, 11 (3) , pp. 245-253.