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Shockwave Therapy for ED Isn’t Replacing Viagra Any Time Soon

Physical therapy of a knee.

Low-intensity shockwave therapy is sometimes used to help rehabilitate patients suffering from osteoarthritis of the knee.

Preliminary research — much of it with animals — has produced promising evidence that low-intensity shockwave therapy might someday offer an alternative to Viagra in the treatment of erectile dysfunction. However, this emerging technology still must undergo far more scientific scrutiny before it wins approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration as a viable ED treatment.

Viagra and the other oral ED drugs known as PDE5 inhibitors work effectively and safely in the vast majority of men suffering from impotence caused by insufficient blood flow to the penis. However, the effects of these drugs last for only four to 36 hours, depending on the medication selected, and they don’t work for all men with vascular-related ED.

Testing Still Preliminary

Early research into the effects of shockwave therapy as an ED treatment indicates that the procedure can help clear plaque from existing blood vessels in the penis and also stimulate the growth of new blood vessels. Some proponents of this new application for an existing technology suggest that it might someday offer significantly longer relief from the symptoms of ED than that afforded by Viagra and the other oral medications.

However, opting for this treatment before it wins FDA approval is ill-advised as it puts one in the role of a laboratory rat for an as-yet unproven procedure. Yet some overeager urology practitioners are already offering shockwave therapy for their ED patients, according to an article posted at Healthline.com.

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About Don Amerman

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Don Amerman has spent more than three decades in the business of writing and editing. During the last 15 years, his focus has been on freelance writing. For almost all of his writing, He has done all of his own research, both online and off, including telephone and face-to-face interviews where possible. Don Amerman on Google+