The presence of prostate cancer is not a reason why the men cannot achieve erection and may develop serious problems with erectile dysfunction. On, contrary, different treatment options for prostate cancer are to blame for the onset of erectile dysfunction in such men. The prostate cancer can be treated with surgery, cryosurgery, radiation therapy and hormone therapy. Not all of the mentioned treatment modalities will cause erectile dysfunction. However, surgery and radiation therapy are most commonly associated with this medical issue.
Erectile Dysfunction after Prostate Surgery
Surgeons give their best to preserve nerves that control erection while removing the prostate gland. Still, in spite of all their efforts some degree of erectile dysfunction still occurs soon after surgery. The severity of erectile dysfunction in this case basically depends on the type of surgery as well as the stage of the disease. The surgeon's skills and experience additionally determine whether the person will end up with erectile dysfunction or not.
In case of nerve-sparing technique erectile dysfunction withdraws within the first year after surgery. On the other hand, if there is no nerve-preservation the recovery is not likely to take place.
However, even if erectile dysfunction occurs, patients can be treated with certain drugs or achieve desirable erection with specific devices.
Erectile Dysfunction after Radiation Therapy
In case of radiation therapy for prostate cancer, patients usually develop erectile dysfunction 6 months after the onset of treatment. In such case erectile dysfunction is in the majority of cases permanent problem. Only if more sophisticated radiation therapy approaches such as radioactive seed implants, intensity-modulated radiotherapy (IMRT) or 3-D conformal radiotherapy are engaged, the chance of developing erectile dysfunction significantly decreases.
And finally, some men suffering from prostate cancer may experience erectile dysfunction 2-4- weeks after the onset of hormone therapy.
Treatment for erectile dysfunction in men suffering from prostate cancer is quite similar to treatment for men who are cancer-free.
Initially, they may be prescribed some oral medications like Cialis, Levitra, Staxyn or Viagra. Prior taking any of the mentioned drugs patients are due to be thoroughly examined. The doctor decides whether the person may take any of these drugs or should abstain from them all.
If these medications fail to provide with desirable effects or are contraindicated, patients may undergo injections which are administered into the penis. Still, even this treatment may not be suitable enough because it is associated with pain and potential scarring.
Better results are obtained with vacuum constriction devices. Also penile suppositories represent one more treatment option for erectile dysfunction in such patients. They are inserted into the penis prior sexual intercourse. And finally, if all else fails, one is left with one more treatment modality - penile implants. This treatment actually involves implantation of specific prosthesis into the penis and the scrotum. Even though there is risk of mechanical failure or infections, many patients are satisfied with this surgery.