Prostate Cancer Blog | Comprehensive Urology Medical Group
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Barbie labiaplasty and traditional labiaplasty are not identical vaginal rejuvenation procedures. To better understand the similarities and differences between the two vaginal rejuvenation treatments, let’s take a look at Barbie labiaplasty and traditional labiaplasty procedures.
What Is a Barbie Labiaplasty?
The first Barbie labiaplasty procedure was performed in 2005 by urogynecologist Dr. Red Alinsod. The vaginal rejuvenation procedure’s name comes from the popular “Barbie” doll, and it is designed to give the vagina a “designer” look.
A Barbie labiaplasty involves a total reduction of the labia minora (inner lips) of the vagina. The procedure also helps move the labia majora (outer lips) of the vagina closer together.
Why Do Women Undergo Barbie Labiaplasty Procedures?
Labiaplasty procedures often help women address discomfort during sexual intercourse or discomfort that occurs during cycling and other sports. Barbie labiaplasty procedures may help women address these issues, too. Yet some women choose to undergo a Barbie procedure due to general unhappiness with their genital appearance.
Barbie labiaplasty is sometimes promoted as a vaginal rejuvenation procedure that can help women achieve an “ideal” genital appearance and boost their self-esteem. However, treatment results vary.
In a recent study published in the Journal of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, researchers found the majority of labiaplasty patients were satisfied with their post-surgery genital appearance. Conversely, researchers noted that most labiaplasty patients experienced little to no improvement relative to psychological domains such as self-esteem and sexual confidence following surgery.
Is a Barbie Labiaplasty Safe and Effective?
Labiaplasty surgeries offer no guarantees, and a Barbie labiaplasty procedure is no exception. In certain instances, women undergo a second labiaplasty surgery to correct mistakes following a Barbie procedure.
What Is a Traditional Labiaplasty?
A traditional labiaplasty helps women address labia that may be too large or asymmetrical. Or, it may be used to treat labia that has become loose or stretched due to childbirth or aging.
Some women undergo a traditional labiaplasty because they are self-conscious about the labia’s appearance. Others may be motivated by functional reasons such as pain during exercise or other everyday activities, discomfort during sexual intercourse, or various hygiene issues.
Labia minora reduction and labia majora reduction are perhaps the two most common types of traditional labiaplasty procedures. A labia minora reduction helps women treat interior vaginal lips that have become stretched, loose, or enlarged and cause discomfort or embarrassment. During a labia minora reduction procedure, a surgeon removes excess or uneven skin from the interior vaginal lips. Comparatively, a labia majora reduction is used to reduce the size of the outer labia majora. During a labia majora reduction procedure, a surgeon removes excess or uneven skin from the outer vaginal lips.
If a patient fails to achieve her desired results during an initial labiaplasty, a revision procedure may be performed. Labiaplasty revision is typically completed under local anesthesia and allows a patient to address one or more of the following issues:
Prominent vaginal edge that needs to be smoothed
Vaginal scar that needs to be repaired
Minor vaginal irregularity that needs to be corrected
If a woman is dealing with genitals that have a “top-heavy” look, clitoral hood reduction may be necessary. A clitoral hood reduction helps balance the results of a labiaplasty. It sometimes is performed at the same time as a labiaplasty, too.
For women who want to address a large clitoris, clitoral reduction surgery may be ideal. A clitoral reduction procedure usually requires only a few hours to complete. During the procedure, a surgeon elevates the clitoral head and removes the clitoris’ erectile shaft. He or she also repositions the shaft, removes redundant clitoral hood skin, and reduces the size of the clitoris’ head.
The success rates of traditional labiaplasty procedures are generally greater than 90%. Women can often undergo a traditional labiaplasty at an outpatient treatment center, and the side effects associated with a labiaplasty procedure are usually minimally. Plus, if a woman selects a highly trained urologist for her labiaplasty, she could enjoy safe, effective, and long-lasting treatment results.
Which Is Better: A Barbie Labiaplasty or a Traditional Labiaplasty?
Both Barbie labiaplasty and traditional labiaplasty procedures have been shown to help women achieve their vaginal rejuvenation goals. As such, choosing between a Barbie labiaplasty and a traditional labiaplasty is rarely simple.
Regardless of whether a woman chooses a Barbie labiaplasty or a traditional labiaplasty, it is important to work with an expert urologist. That way, a woman can evaluate all of her labiaplasty procedure options and make an informed treatment decision.
At Comprehensive Urology, our friendly, knowledgeable urologists are happy to meet with women and learn about their vaginal rejuvenation surgery goals. Our urologists offer personalized vaginal rejuvenation treatment recommendations to help each patient achieve the optimal results. To schedule a vaginal rejuvenation treatment consultation with one of our urologists, please contact us today at (310) 499-2756.
Erectile dysfunction (ED) has been linked to high blood pressure. In some instances, high blood pressure itself causes ED. Or, in other cases, high blood pressure medications may increase the risk of ED symptoms.
What Is the Link Between High Blood Pressure and ED?
The shaft of the penis includes chambers that are responsible for erections. When a man gets an erection, the brain or nerve endings in the penis send signals that cause the muscles in these chambers to relax. At this point, the chambers’ arteries dilate, and a rush of blood fills the chambers’ empty spaces. As blood flows into the penis, the penis grows and becomes stiff, leading to an erection.
Men dealing with high blood pressure may struggle to generate sufficient blood flow to the penis that otherwise leads to an erection. High blood pressure sometimes prevents arteries in the penis from dilating to produce an erection. It may also make it tough for smooth muscle in the penis to relax.
Can High Blood Pressure Drugs Cause ED?
Doctors may prescribe diuretics or beta-blockers to treat high blood pressure in men. These medications have been shown to help men manage their blood pressure. However, in some cases, diuretics and beta-blockers may cause ED.
Diuretics reduce the force of blood flow to the penis. They may also lower the amount of zinc in the body; zinc is required to produce testosterone.
Comparatively, beta-blockers limit nerve impulse responses that lead to erections. They often make it difficult for the arteries in the penis to dilate and limit the amount of blood that enters the arteries to produce an erection. Furthermore, beta-blockers may result in feelings of sedation and depression – both of which can negatively affect a man’s ability to feel sexual arousal.
Is ED Common Among Men with High Blood Pressure?
WebMD reports a study published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society revealed 49% of men between the ages of 40 and 79 who had high blood pressure also experienced ED symptoms.
Additionally, a Journal of Urology study showed 68% of men had high blood pressure and some degree of ED. In this study, 45% of men experienced high blood pressure and severe ED.
How to Safely Treat High Blood Pressure and ED Symptoms at the Same Time
For men who are currently taking diuretics or beta-blockers to treat high blood pressure, alternative medications are available that may reduce the risk of ED symptoms. These medications include:
Angiotensin Converting Enzyme (ACE) Inhibitors: Help widen blood vessels and boost blood flow to the penis.
Angiotensin II Receptor Blockers (ARBs): Have been shown to reduce ED symptoms and help improve sexual function in men with high blood pressure.
Calcium Channel Blockers: Include Amlodipine, Diltiazem, and Verapamil, which rarely cause ED.
Sometimes, doctors recommend men take ED medications in conjunction with their existing high blood pressure drugs. Common ED medications include:
Doctors may recommend ED medications if a man’s blood pressure is under control. ED medications may be unsafe for men dealing with untreated high blood pressure. They are also unsafe for men who take alpha-blockers for high blood pressure or nitrate drugs for heart disease.
What ED Medication Alternatives Are Available?
In addition to medication, other ED treatment options are available for men dealing with high blood pressure. Common ED medication alternatives include:
Penile Pumps and Implants: A penile pump requires the placement of a tension ring around the base of the penis to prevent blood from leaving the penis long enough to have sex. Meanwhile, penile implants are inflatable or semi-rigid devices that are surgically placed on either side of the penis.
Penile Injection Therapy: Penile injection therapy requires an injection into the side of the penis to dilate the arteries and improve blood flow to the penis, resulting in an erection.
Counseling: Counseling helps men address emotional or psychological issues that may cause ED symptoms.
Surgery: Surgery involves transplanting blood vessels from another part of the body into the penis or inserting a vascular stent to improve blood flow to the penis. If damaged or obstructed blood vessels cause ED, a bypass surgery may be used to correct this issue.
To determine if any of the aforementioned treatments can help address ED symptoms, it is important for a man to consult with a urologist. That way, this individual can work with a urologist to determine the best course of action to safely and effectively address ED.
Low-Intensity Shockwave Therapy: A Safe, Effective, and Proven ED Treatment
Low-intensity shockwave therapy (LISWT) is a state-of-the-art procedure designed to treat ED symptoms. It helps men correct ED that occurs due to insufficient blood flow to the penis. Plus, LISWT is a safe, effective ED treatment for men dealing with high blood pressure.
LISWT involves the use of high-frequency, low-intensity sound waves to improve blood flow to the penis. These sound waves simultaneously repair damaged blood vessels and stimulate the growth of new blood vessels, as well as eliminate micro-plaque that may cause a curved, bent, or crooked penis (Peyronie’s disease).
More than 40 clinical studies have shown that LISWT is a viable ED treatment. In fact, studies indicate LISWT delivers a success rate of 75% or greater among ED patients.
Choose Comprehensive Urology in Los Angeles for Erectile Dysfunction Treatment
Treating ED can be challenging, particularly for men dealing with high blood pressure. At Comprehensive Urology, our team of friendly, knowledgeable urologists is happy to help patients alleviate their ED symptoms. We work with each ED patient and offer a personalized treatment plan designed to deliver immediate and long-lasting results. To find out more about our ED treatment options, please contact us today at (310) 499-2756 to schedule a consultation with one of our urologists.
Erectile dysfunction (ED) is a problem for men worldwide. Approximately 5% of men experience complete ED at age 40, and this figure increases to around 15% for men at age 70, according to the University of Wisconsin.
Men who understand how an erection works may be better equipped than others to identify the initial signs of ED. Then, these men can take the necessary steps to address their ED symptoms before they escalate.
What Happens During an Erection?
An erection begins with sensory and mental stimulation. When a man becomes sexually aroused, nerve messages start to stimulate the penis. Next, brain and nerve impulses cause blood vessels in the penis to relax. Blood then rushes into these vessels and becomes trapped under pressure. This ultimately causes the penis to expand, leading to an erection.
Eventually, blood vessels in the penis begin to contract. This stops the rush of blood into the penis and causes the penis to become flaccid.
ED: Here’s What Men Need to Know
ED refers to a condition that impacts a man’s ability to achieve or maintain an erection. It can affect men of all ages, and in some instances, is linked to stress, anxiety, and relationship problems.
There are two primary causes of ED: physical and psychological. Common physical causes of ED include:
Comparatively, there are many psychological issues that cause men to experience ED. These issues include:
For men who experience ED, it is important to consult with an expert urologist in order to identify the physical and psychological causes of their ED symptoms and treat such issues accordingly.
How Does a Urologist Diagnose ED?
To diagnose ED, a urologist performs a physical examination and evaluates a patient’s medical history. He or she may also use one or more of the following tests to provide an accurate ED diagnosis:
Blood and Urine Tests: Allow a urologist to identify diabetes, heart disease, low testosterone, and other medical issues that may contribute to ED symptoms.
Nocturnal Erection Monitoring: Involves the use of a device that is placed around the penis and measures the strength or number of erections that a patient experiences while he sleeps.
Psychological Tests: Enable a urologist to identify anxiety, depression, stress, and other psychological factors that may impact a man’s ability to get and sustain an erection.
Ultrasound or MRI: Helps determine if vascular or blood flow issues cause ED. Ultrasound or MRI testing may be used in conjunction with injectable medications that stimulate blood flow to the penis and produce an erection, too.
Once a urologist performs a full patient evaluation, he or she then provides a personalized ED treatment recommendation. A urologist also works with a patient to implement an ED treatment strategy and ensure this individual can achieve the optimal results.
How to Address ED Symptoms
There is no shortage of ED treatments available. Some of the most common ED treatments include:
Diet and Lifestyle Changes: Obesity puts strain on the cardiovascular system that sometimes interferes with blood flow to the penis, thereby making it difficult for men to experience erections. In these instances, losing weight and maintaining a balanced diet may help a man overcome ED. Additionally, eliminating or reducing alcohol or nicotine consumption, limiting stress, and getting sufficient sleep may help a man address his ED symptoms.
Medication: Oral medications often contain nitric oxide, a chemical that helps relax the penis and improve blood flow to the penis. Meanwhile, injectable medications are sometimes used to trigger an immediate erection. Injectable medications may be administered into the base or side of the penis or via a special suppository applicator, and they usually trigger an erection that lasts between 30 minutes and 1 hour.
Vacuum Pump: A penis pump immediately pulls blood into the penis. It often involves the use of a tension ring that goes around the base of the penis and stops blood from exiting the penis long enough for a man to engage in sexual intercourse.
Penile Implant: A penile implant is an inflatable or semi-rigid device that is placed on one or both sides of the penis. With an inflatable penile implant, a man can control when and how long an erection lasts. Or, a man can use a semi-rigid penile implant, which remains firm yet flexible.
Counseling: Meeting with a counselor sometimes help a man address various emotional or psychological factors that contribute to ED. Counseling generally allows a man to identify and work through emotional or psychological issues that lead to ED symptoms.
Surgery: In rare instances, damaged or obstructed blood vessels may cause ED, and bypass surgery is available to address these issues. During a bypass procedure, blood vessels from another part of the body are transplanted into the penis, or a vascular stent is inserted into the penis to improve blood flow.
A urologist may recommend one or more of the following treatments to correct ED symptoms. Furthermore, urologists sometimes recommend low-intensity shockwave therapy (LISWT), a non-invasive and painless ED treatment.
What Is Low-Intensity Shockwave Therapy for ED?
LISWT helps men who struggle to achieve erections. It also helps men who are dealing with erections that are too soft or too brief for penetration.
During an LISWT procedure, a urologist uses low-intensity sound waves to improve blood flow to the penis. These sound waves remove micro-plaque from the penis, as well as accelerate the growth of new blood vessels and fix damaged blood vessels. As a result, LISWT simultaneously enhances blood flow to the penis and stimulates dormant stem cells and growth factors in the penis.
LISWT delivers proven results for ED patients, too. In LISWT studies, 70% of men who experienced ED reported a positive effect after only six treatment sessions (twice per week). Also, among these men, 92% reported a positive response to LISWT for 12 months after initial treatment, and 55% maintained a positive response to LISWT for 24 months after initial treatment.
Is LISWT the Right ED Treatment for You?
Research indicates ED affects up to 30 million men in the United States, and approximately 52% of men experience ED symptoms at some point in their life. Now, LISWT and other ED treatments are available to help men quickly alleviate their ED symptoms. By scheduling an ED treatment consultation with an expert urologist, a man can undergo an extensive evaluation and receive a personalized ED treatment recommendation.
At Comprehensive Urology in Los Angeles, our urologists are happy to help men of all ages treat their ED symptoms. We take an in-depth approach to ED treatment and will do whatever we can to help a man overcome his ED symptoms. To find out more, please contact us today at (310) 499-2756 to schedule an ED treatment consultation with one of our friendly, knowledgeable urologists.
Oral medications are among the most common treatments for erectile dysfunction (ED), yet these medications offer no guarantees. For example, recent research indicates 69% of men who used oral medications for ED after treatment. Other research shows 48% of men experienced one or more side effects after using sildenafil (Viagra) to treat ED.
Ultimately, various treatments enable men to address ED without medication. These treatments include:
Diet and Lifestyle Changes
There is a strong correlation between mental and physical health and sexual function. As such, men sometimes treat ED with a series of diet and lifestyle changes, such as:
Losing Weight: Excess weight puts additional pressure on the cardiovascular system. It can also disrupt the flow of blood to the penis, making it difficult for men to get or maintain erections.
Maintaining a Balanced Diet: Eating fruits, vegetables, grains, and other healthy foods as part of a balanced diet lowers the risk of vascular problems due to high cholesterol, high blood sugar, and being overweight, all of which have been linked to ED.
Avoiding Alcohol and Nicotine: Men who consume alcohol or nicotine are more susceptible than others to ED. Therefore, avoiding alcohol and nicotine often helps men stop or prevent ED.
Minimizing Stress: Limiting stress helps men boost their testosterone levels, and as a result, overcome or avoid ED.
Exercising Regularly: Exercise helps men simultaneously reduce stress and increase their testosterone levels. Also, an exercise regimen can be used in conjunction with a healthy diet to prevent ED.
Getting Sufficient Rest: A lack of restful sleep can interfere with a man’s sexual performance. In fact, studies show men who suffer from sleep apnea improved their erectile function after they started using a CPAP breathing machine at night.
Diet and lifestyle changes may be ideal to treat ED if the blood vessels in the penis start to deteriorate. In this scenario, one or more of the aforementioned diet and lifestyle changes may help improve blood flow to the penis.
Emotional and psychological factors sometimes cause ED. Fortunately, counseling may help men alleviate stress, anxiety, and other emotional or psychological issues that contribute to ED.
Additionally, strife and dissatisfaction in an intimate relationship can negatively impact a man’s libido and his ability to get aroused, leading to ED. In this situation, relationship counseling may prove to be beneficial for a man and his partner. It enables a man to communicate with his partner to identify the root cause of his ED. Plus, relationship counseling may help a man overcome ED caused by stress.
A “penis pump” or Vacuum Erectile Device is a device that allows a man to get and maintain an erection. It usually consists of an acrylic cylinder with a pump that attaches directly to the end of the penis. The pump also includes a constriction ring on the other end of the cylinder that is applied directly to the body.
With a penis pump, a man uses the device’s cylinder and pump to help the penis become erect. Next, the constriction ring helps a man maintain an erection during sexual intercourse.
A penis pump is sometimes recommended for men who are dealing with ED caused by diabetes, prostate or colon cancer surgery, poor blood flow to the penis, or emotional or psychological issues. It is not intended for use by men who are dealing with a congenital blood disorder or any condition that exposes them to priapism (a prolonged erection that may last several hours).
Low intensity shockwave therapy (LISWT), aka PulseWave or Gainswave, is a revolutionary, non-invasive ED treatment requiring no medication. It helps men treat erections that are too soft or too brief for penetration, as well as improve the quality of their erections.
Shockwave therapy for ED uses pulsating sound waves to treat ED. These sound waves improve blood flow to the penis, along with remove micro-plaque, boost the growth of new blood vessels, and repair damaged blood vessels.
An illustration of how low-intensity shockwave treatment works for erectile dysfunction
PulseWave may be used on its own to treat ED, or it may be used in combination with other ED treatments. Shockwave therapy has been clinically proven to rehabilitate penile tissue without any unwanted side effects, and most LISWT patients report enhancement and restoration of erectile function following treatment.
Research shows 70% of men who experienced ED reported a positive effect with shockwave therapy after only six treatment sessions (twice per week). Among these men, 92% recorded a positive response to LISWT for one year after their initial treatment. Furthermore, 55% maintained a positive response to LISWT for two years after their initial treatment.
Book an ED Treatment Consultation at Comprehensive Urology
ED is one of the most common sex problems that men report to their doctors. Research indicates up to 30 million American men deal with erectile dysfunction, and more than half of these men experience ED at some point in their lives. However, only 33% of men seek treatment for ED – despite the fact that many safe, effective ED treatments are available.
At Comprehensive Urology in Los Angeles, our team of courteous, knowledgeable urologists takes the guesswork out of ED treatment. We meet with patients, analyze their symptoms, and offer personalized diagnoses and treatments. Our team also works with patients throughout ED treatments, ensuring these individuals can address their symptoms both now and in the future. To find out more about how our team can help you treat ED, please contact us today at (310) 499-2756 to schedule a consultation with one of our urologists.
September marks Prostate Cancer Awareness Month, a campaign designed to educate people about prostate cancer. At Comprehensive Urology, we strive to educate patients and their loved ones about prostate cancer. As part of our commitment to Prostate Cancer Awareness Month, we want to teach people how they can support family members, friends, and colleagues dealing with this diagnosis.
Let’s take a look at four ways to support someone with prostate cancer.
Learn About Prostate Cancer
Knowledge is power, especially when it comes to prostate cancer. Thus, the more a person learns about prostate cancer, the more he or she can support a prostate cancer patient.
An online search often provides a great starting point to locate prostate cancer resources from globally recognized medical experts and organizations. These resources are generally available free of charge and provide in-depth insights into all aspects of prostate cancer.
There is no shortage of free online prostate cancer resources. Some of the best online prostate cancer resources include:
CancerCare: Provides prostate cancer treatment information, along with free, professional support services for prostate cancer patients and their loved ones.
American Cancer Society (ACS): Provides a prostate cancer overview, insights into prostate cancer treatment options and their possible side effects, and information about what to expect after prostate cancer treatment.
National Cancer Institute: Provides prostate cancer research and statistics, as well as insights into common issues and concerns that arise after a person receives a prostate cancer diagnosis.
Our website: Provides a lot of information relating to treatment, especially new innovative options like HIFU (high intensity focused ultrasound).
Prostate cancer is complex. As such, it usually helps to have a basic understanding before you review any of the aforementioned online resources. To better understand prostate cancer, let’s examine some top-level information regarding the condition, its severity, and its prevalence.
Prostate cancer is the most common type of cancer in men, according to ACS. Approximately one in nine men will receive a prostate cancer diagnosis in his lifetime, ACS notes. Yet some men ignore prostate cancer and the dangers associated with it. Meanwhile, failure to diagnose and treat prostate cancer in its early stages may cause painful urination, blood in the urine or semen, lower back pain, and other health problems.
Prostate cancer begins as adenocarcinoma, a type of cancer that develops in the body’s mucus-secreting glands. It is a slow, progressive disease and may be more difficult to detect than other forms of cancer. However, in some instances, prostate cancer grows and spreads quickly throughout the body.
There are four risk factors associated with prostate cancer:
Age: Prostate cancer may occur at any age, but it is rare in men under the age of 40. According to ACS, the average age of men at the time of a prostate cancer diagnosis is about 66.
Genes: Men with a family history of prostate cancer tend to be more prone to prostate cancer than others.
Ethnicity: Research indicates African-American men are more susceptible to prostate cancer than all other ethnic groups.
Diet: Exposure to various agricultural pesticides in foods may increase the risk of prostate cancer. Additionally, studies have shown diets rich in animal fats and red meat may increase the risk of prostate cancer.
Perhaps most important, prostate cancer is treatable. Approximately 2.9 million prostate cancer patients are still alive today, ACS states. With proper prostate cancer diagnosis and treatment — and plenty of support from loved ones — men can address their prostate cancer symptoms.
Become a Good Sounding Board
For the patient, a prostate cancer diagnosis may incite anger, sadness, anxiety, depression, and other emotions. As a loved one who cares about a prostate cancer patient, it is crucial to do everything possible to provide this individual with a good sounding board. That way, a prostate cancer patient can express any concerns, fears, or questions to a trusted confidant throughout a prostate cancer treatment.
Becoming a good sounding board is unlikely to happen overnight, and an individual must work diligently to empathize with a prostate cancer patient to ensure he or she can provide emotional support. Fortunately, there are several things an individual can do to become a good sounding board, including:
Listen and respond. Listen to what your loved one has to say. By doing so, an individual can learn about a prostate cancer patient’s emotions and respond accordingly.
Avoid platitudes. Saying things like “I know you will do great!” to a prostate cancer patient may seem helpful, but these platitudes offer no guarantees. Avoid platitudes, and instead, help your loved one analyze all aspects of his emotions.
Identify emotional subtext. Keep an eye out for signs of doubt, anger, and other emotions and ask questions to help a prostate cancer patient understand and deal with his emotions.
It often helps to know a family member, friend, or colleague is available to chat at any time, too. Therefore, an individual should remain accessible to a prostate cancer patient via phone call, email, and text. This enables a prostate cancer patient to take solace in the fact that he can reach out to a loved one for support in times of need.
Be an Active Participant in Your Loved One’s Prostate Cancer Treatment
There are many ways an individual can take an active role in a prostate cancer treatment. These include:
Provide Help Around the House: Help a prostate cancer patient maintain a neat, tidy house and perform assorted day-to-day errands to help this individual focus on what is most important — treating his prostate cancer.
Offer a Ride to the Doctor: Going to a doctor alone may be stressful. By providing a ride to the doctor, an individual may help a prostate cancer patient alleviate some of the stress commonly associated with doctor’s visits.
Find Support Groups:US Too, Male Care, Imerman Angels, and other prostate cancer support groups are available nationwide. These groups enable prostate cancer patients and survivors to connect with and support one another throughout treatment and recovery.
Offer support by joining a prostate cancer support group with your loved one
An individual does not have to be a urologist to help a prostate cancer patient achieve the best possible treatment results. If an individual takes an active role in a prostate cancer treatment, he or she can help a patient combat prostate cancer both now and in the future.
Take Care of Yourself
Don’t forget to take care of yourself — without exception. Otherwise, you may struggle to provide your loved one with your full attention.
There are a lot of things you can do to simultaneously support a prostate cancer patient and take care of yourself. These include:
Get Plenty of Rest: The National Sleep Foundation (NSF) recommends an adult get between seven and nine hours of sleep per night. With a good night’s sleep, a person can stay focused, optimize his or her day-to-day productivity and efficiency, and provide a prostate cancer patient with comprehensive support.
Take Time to Process Your Emotions: Seeing a loved one go through a prostate cancer treatment may be traumatic, and an individual should dedicate time to process his or her emotions. It may also be beneficial for an individual to discuss his or her emotions with a loved one.
Enjoy Some “Me” Time: Let’s face it — everyone needs a break sometimes. For an individual who feels stressed or worried about a loved one dealing with prostate cancer, spend some time enjoying a fun activity. This activity may help an individual feel refreshed, revitalized, and ready to help a prostate cancer patient in any way possible.
Prostate cancer is a major challenge for patients and their loved ones. Thankfully, Comprehensive Urology serves as a prostate cancer resource. Our team includes urological experts who can respond to prostate cancer concerns and questions, as well as provide personalized prostate cancer treatment recommendations. To find out more, please contact us today at (310) 499-2756 to schedule a consultation with one of our friendly, knowledgeable urologists.
Women sometimes undergo vaginal rejuvenation treatments to improve the genitals’ appearance. Vaginal rejuvenation treatments also help women correct genital defects and restore the genitals’ function. They may be ideal for yogis, joggers, and other athletes as well.
Vaginal Rejuvenation Treatments: Here’s What You Need to Know
Over time, a woman’s vagina will stretch and lose muscle tone. This generally occurs due to the natural aging process or childbirth, and it may result in vaginal dryness and discomfort, reduced sexual satisfaction, and other problems.
Vaginal rejuvenation treatments deliver both cosmetic and functional benefits. They may be used to improve the symmetry and proportion of the vagina. Or, vaginal rejuvenation treatments may address vaginal laxity to enhance sexual function or repair genital defects.
There is no one-size-fits-all vaginal rejuvenation treatment for all women, at all times. Both surgical and non-surgical vaginal rejuvenation treatments are available. As such, it is important for women to evaluate their options to select the right vaginal rejuvenation treatment based on their individual needs.
Benefits of Vaginal Rejuvenation for Athletic Women
Yoga, running, and other exercises may cause vaginal chafing and irritation. Fortunately, vaginal rejuvenation treatments are available to help athletic women address these problems.
There are many reasons why athletic women choose vaginal rejuvenation procedures. These reasons include:
Increased Vaginal Tightness: Excessive exercise or stretching may cause muscles around the vagina and surrounding tissue to become loose, leading to vaginal discomfort, incontinence, and reduced pleasure during sexual intercourse. Vaginal rejuvenation treatments enable women to tighten the labia majora and vaginal area.
Proven Incontinence Treatment:Female incontinence is commonly associated with aging, injury, or muscle weakness, yet it can be a problem for women of all ages and fitness levels. In fact, women who work as Pilates teachers, yoga instructors, and fitness trainers sometimes experience pelvic floor muscle weakness that results in urinary incontinence. Thanks to vaginal rejuvenation treatments, athletic women can enhance muscle coordination around the bladder, thereby reducing the risk of urinary incontinence.
Enhanced Vaginal Appearance: Vaginal skin may sag over the years, which can impact the vagina’s overall appearance. As the vaginal skin sags, athletic women may start to feel uncomfortable in yoga leggings, workout pants, and other form-fitting exercise apparel. With vaginal rejuvenation treatments, women can correct sagging skin in the inner and outer labia and improve the vagina’s appearance. Plus, vaginal rejuvenation treatments may make it easier than ever before for women to wear form-fitting clothing comfortably and confidently.
Reduced Vaginal Dryness: Strenuous exercise programs like high-interval intensity workouts may cause vaginal dryness, as well as vaginal burning, itching, and discomfort. Meanwhile, vaginal rejuvenation treatments help women improve blood circulation in the vaginal area. By doing so, the treatments enable women to promote natural lubrication in the vagina and restore healthy vaginal moisture.
Female runners sometimes consider vaginal rejuvenation
When it comes to vaginal rejuvenation treatments for athletic women, ThermiVa is one of the top options. ThermiVa is a non-hormonal, non-invasive vaginal rejuvenation procedure, and it delivers both cosmetic and functional benefits for athletic women.
Why Do Athletic Women Choose ThermiVa for Vaginal Rejuvenation?
ThermiVa helps athletic women treat excessive stretching of the vaginal muscles that otherwise diminishes pleasure during sexual intercourse. It also provides instant vaginal rejuvenation results.
A typical ThermiVa treatment is performed as an outpatient procedure and requires less than an hour to complete. During a ThermiVa procedure, a urologist uses an “S” shaped handpiece that has a width of about 0.5″. The handpiece has an active tip, a small metal square that gently emits radiofrequency (RF) energy to the vaginal tissue. It is used across the internal and external vaginal anatomy, and the hand piece’s RF energy stimulates the growth and development of collagen and elastic fibers in the vagina. This helps tighten the vaginal skin and muscle tissue, enhance vaginal nerve function, and increase the blood supply in the vaginal canal and labia.
There is no downtime associated with ThermiVa. After a ThermiVa treatment, athletic women can do yoga, jog, and resume other everyday activities. Athletic women can even engage in sexual activity following a ThermiVa procedure.
To date, more than 85,000 ThermiVa treatments have been administered worldwide. Research has shown ThermiVa is a safe, effective vaginal rejuvenation treatment that causes no discomfort or pain. Additionally, ThermiVa may be used to treat a variety of vaginal issues, including:
Vaginal Tightness: Tightens the entire vagina, including the vaginal opening.
Incontinence: Can be used in conjunction with pelvic floor exercises to limit the risk of urinary leakage.
Vaginal Sagging: Reduces the appearance of a “camel toe” and helps women wear tight-fitting apparel comfortably.
Vaginal Dryness: Treats vaginal moisture both inside and outside the vagina and softens the vulva-vaginal skin, leading to less pain and increased pleasure during sexual intercourse.
To achieve the optimal ThermiVa results, athletic women may require a series of treatment sessions over the course of several months. Upon successful completion of ThermiVa sessions, athletic women may experience vaginal rejuvenation results that last up to two years.
For athletic women who are considering vaginal rejuvenation treatments, meeting with a urologist is ideal. Prior to a ThermiVa treatment, a urologist examines a patient and determines if she is a viable candidate for the procedure. Then, the urologist provides the patient with a custom vaginal rejuvenation treatment recommendation.
If a urologist recommends ThermiVa for vaginal rejuvenation, he or she will teach a patient about the procedure and respond to any concerns or questions. On the other hand, if a patient does not qualify for ThermiVa, a urologist will offer vaginal rejuvenation treatment alternatives.
Schedule a Vaginal Rejuvenation Treatment Consultation at Comprehensive Urology in Los Angeles
At Comprehensive Urology, we are proud to offer ThermiVa and other vaginal rejuvenation treatments for athletic and non-athletic women alike. Our expert urologists are happy to meet with patients, learn about their vaginal rejuvenation goals, and offer personalized treatment recommendations. To find out more about ThermiVa and other vaginal rejuvenation treatments, please contact us today at (310) 499-2756 to schedule a consultation with one of our urologists.
One of the most common vagina tightening myths is that there are all kinds of “overnight” or “quick-fix” treatments that will deliver results. For women who want to restore or improve vaginal tightness, there is no shortage of overnight treatments across the internet, and these include:
Pills: Often include phytoestrogen, a natural estrogen that comes from plants. Vaginal tightening pills are designed to heal, rejuvenate, and replenish all of a woman’s sexual organs. They can be taken orally and may help women tighten and tone the vaginal muscles and maintain the vagina’s mucosal layer. Yet vaginal tightening pills offer no guarantees. In some instances, these pills have little to no effect on vaginal tightness.
Creams and Gels: Usually consist of ingredients that have been shown to restore or improve skin elasticity. Creams and gels frequently act as natural lubricants that help women alleviate vaginal pain and soreness. Additionally, they may help women stimulate sexual responses and reduce the risk of fungal and bacterial infections. But not all creams and gels are created equal, and some of these products contain glycerin that has been linked to yeast and bacterial infections.
Squats: Require a woman to stand with her feet outside of hip width, place her toes at about a 30° angle, and bend at the hips. During a squat, a woman should keep the spine straight and lift her chest as well. Squats may be used to help women regain lost vaginal tightness, and they must be performed carefully. Otherwise, a woman who performs squats incorrectly risks aches or injuries.
Aloe: Offers a natural herb that women can apply to the vagina lips daily. The gel from an aloe vera leaf can be administered to the vagina lips five to six times a day or prior to sexual intercourse to help relieve vaginal discomfort and dryness. On the other hand, aloe vera sometimes disrupts a woman’s vaginal pH balance, leading to infections, bad odor, itching, burning, irritation, and discomfort.
Lemon: Provides a rich source of vitamin C and other nutrients that help cleanse the vagina. Lemon has antioxidant properties that make it a popular choice for hygiene products. Conversely, lemon contains citric acid that may interfere with a woman’s vaginal pH balance.
Apple Cider Vinegar: Has been used in some treatments to clean and tighten the vagina. Although women have incorporated apple cider vinegar into various douching techniques, recent research indicates apple cider vinegar puts the vagina in danger. Apple cider vinegar has been shown to disrupt the “good” bacteria in the vagina, resulting in infections and irritation.
None of the aforementioned overnight treatments are proven to help women consistently address vaginal looseness. Fortunately, ThermiVa is a vaginal tightening treatment unlike any other that provides quick results. It offers fast, safe, and effective non-surgical vaginal rejuvenation.
ThermiVa: Here’s What You Need to Know
A ThermiVa procedure involves the use of radiofrequency (RF) energy to stimulate natural collagen production and tissue rejuvenation in the vagina. This energy tightens the vagina, as well as enhances vaginal lubrication and may improve vaginal sensation.
Typically, a ThermiVa procedure requires about 30 minutes to complete. During the procedure, a urologist applies RF energy to the vagina via an S-shaped handheld device; this device has a small metal square on the bottom of the electrode to safely and gently heat the vaginal tissue.
A ThermiVa procedure can be used to treat both internal and external female anatomical features, including the inner and outer labia and vaginal canal. The procedure results in zero downtime, and patients generally experience no pain or discomfort during or after treatment. Plus, patients do not need to be hospitalized following a ThermiVa procedure.
Women who experience one or more of the following issues may qualify for ThermiVa:
Vaginal dryness, chafing, or itching
Ongoing vaginal or urinary tract infections
Pain during sexual intercourse
Little to no friction or sensation during sexual intercourse
There are many reasons why women choose ThermiVa over other overnight vaginal tightening treatments as well. These reasons include:
Improved Cosmetic Appearance: Addresses sagging skin, resulting in a more youthful-looking vaginal appearance.
Reduced Dryness: Stimulates blood circulation to promote normal vaginal function and natural lubrication of the vagina.
Reduced Urinary Leakage: Tightens and strengths tissues under the bladder, reducing the risk of mild stress or urge incontinence.
No Surgery Required: Does not require any anesthesia or incisions.
Long-Term Results: Delivers vaginal rejuvenation that lasts between nine months and two years.
Most patients experience improved vaginal tightness following their initial ThermiVa treatment. That being said, patients usually need a minimum of three ThermiVa treatments over the course of three to four months to achieve the best-possible vaginal rejuvenation results.
Learn About ThermiVa Treatments from Dr. Palmer of Comprehensive Urology in Los Angeles
Dr. Cristina Palmer of Comprehensive Urology of Los Angeles is happy to teach patients about ThermiVa and other vaginal rejuvenation treatments. She devotes time and resources to learn about a patient and her vaginal issues. Then, Dr. Palmer can provide each patient with a personalized vaginal rejuvenation treatment recommendation.
To date, Dr. Palmer has treated patients dealing with urinary tract infections, urinary incontinence, pelvic organ prolapse, urinary fistulas, interstitial cystitis, and other urological conditions. In addition to ThermiVa, Dr. Palmer administers many urological treatments, such as:
Lifestyle Modification: Sometimes, certain foods and ingredients may trigger urological problems. Dr. Palmer can help patients identify foods or ingredients that lead to urological issues and implement appropriate lifestyle changes.
Neuromodulation: Electric nerve stimulation may help patients alleviate bladder pain, along with pain in the lower back and pelvis. Dr. Palmer offers neuromodulation treatments to help patients stimulate nerves and minimize pelvic pain and tension.
Surgery: Pelvic and urethral surgical procedures are available to treat urinary incontinence and other urological problems. Dr. Palmer can help patients determine if surgery is the best option to treat a urological issue and craft a custom treatment based on a patient’s surgery goals.
For patients who want to learn about ThermiVa or other vaginal tightening treatments, Dr. Palmer is ready to help. She understands the challenges associated with vaginal looseness and will work with a patient to help her quickly and safely tighten the vagina.
Set Up a Vaginal Rejuvenation Consultation at Comprehensive Urology in Beverly Hills
Whereas some overnight vaginal tightening “treatments” promise fast, efficient results, few options actually help women achieve their vaginal rejuvenation goals. At Comprehensive Urology in Los Angeles, our team of urological experts understands there is no one-size-fits-all treatment for vaginal tightening. We meet with patients to learn about their vaginal issues and help them plan accordingly. Also, we can offer a custom treatment recommendation designed to help a patient address vaginal looseness both now and in the future.
To find out more about ThermiVa and other vaginal tightening treatments, please contact us today at (310) 499-2756 to schedule a consultation with one of our friendly, knowledgeable urologists.
More than half (52%) of all American men experience ED at some point in their life
Not just a disease of old men, ED affects 40% of men older than 40 and as much as 70% of men older than 70
25% of men presenting for first-time treatment of ED are younger than 40, with almost 50% regarded as severe cases.
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Certain health conditions can increase your risk of developing ED.
~ 90% of all men with ED have at least one risk factor for cardiovascular disease (i.e., diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, or active smoking)
35% to 75% of men with diabetes will experience some degree of ED
Up to 68% of men with high blood pressure have some form of ED, with 45% reporting severe cases
50% to 60% of cases of ED in men older than 60 are due to hardening of the arteries, which is the primary cause of heart disease
Risk of ED is increased by 60% if you smoke more than 1 pack daily
More than 200 prescription medications have ED as a potential side effect.
Treatment of ED
The mainstays for the treatment of ED are oral medications, including PDE5 inhibitors such sildenafil (Viagra®), vardenafil (Levitra®), tadalafil (Cialis®), and avanafil (Stendra®).
Only 33% of men seek treatment for ED
66% of men who have taken Viagra report successful intercourse
48% of men experience one or more side effects (e.g., stuffy nose, headache, or visual changes) after using Viagra
69% of men reported that their ED persisted despite oral medications.
In the event that oral medications don’t successfully treat ED, there are other treatments, including penile injections or suppositories, vacuum erection devices, or surgery to place penile implants.
80% of men with ED, regardless of their age or the cause of their ED, achieve erections with penile injections
50% to 80% of men report being satisfied with the results of vacuum erection devices
90% to 95% of penile implants produce erections suitable for sex
80% to 90% of men report being satisfied with the results of penile implants.
An Innovation in ED Treatment
Another emerging treatment for ED with no side-effects is non-invasive, non-surgical, low-intensity shockwave therapy (LISWT).
60% of men experiencing ED reported a positive effect with LISWT after only 12 sessions (twice per week)
92% of responders maintained their positive responses to LISWTfor a total of 1 year after initial treatment
55% of responders maintained their positive responses to LISWT for a total of 2 years after initial treatment
Erectile dysfunction (ED) is not a topic that most men want to freely discuss. ED does not mean that you are infertile, but it can have unintended consequences, especially if it becomes a regular occurrence. The condition can get so bad that you may avoid or become highly anxious at the thought of sexual relations with your partner. At this point, many men contemplate how to improve erectile dysfunction. There are multiple options for ED treatment, and many men are overwhelmed and do not know where to start on their journey to meaningful ED recovery.
Causes of Erectile Dysfunction
For the majority of men suffering from erectile dysfunction, a visit to their physician for an open discussion about their condition is the logical first step to begin ED treatment. As a general rule, the causes of erectile dysfunction in all men fall into one of two clear-cut categories—psychological or physical. Your physician can offer a wealth of information about ED to help you achieve control of this condition, which is more common than most people think or would like to admit. In addition to a thorough physical examination, your physician will ask you a series of probing questions in an effort to pinpoint whether the cause for your ED is physical or psychological.
The great majority of cases of erectile dysfunction have their roots in physical causes. Established risk factors for the development of erectile dysfunction may include the following:
Chronic medical conditions: For many older men, and some younger men, chronic diseases such as heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, obesity, and high cholesterol are common contributing factors to erectile dysfunction. All of these chronic medical conditions can decrease blood flow to the penis, which is the root cause of ED.
Certain prescription medications: More than 200 prescription medications list erectile dysfunction as a potential side effect and, therefore, may cause the condition. The list includes antidepressant medications, medications to treat high blood pressure, allergy medications and pain medications.
Tobacco use: Smoking causes damage to arteries and veins, restricting the blood flow to the penis. Over time, smoking can also lead to chronic diseases, such as hypertension and heart disease, that are significant causes of ED. As a matter of fact, smoking more than 20 cigarettes per day (one pack) will significantly increase your risk of developing ED.
Drug and alcohol use: Recreational drugs, such as marijuana, cocaine, heroin, and amphetamines, are well-known contributors to erectile dysfunction. Chronic alcohol abuse and binge drinking are well-established causes of erectile dysfunction, but even low doses of alcohol have the potential to induce ED.
Certain medical treatments: Surgery, chemotherapy, or radiation therapy for cancer, such as prostate, colon, or bladder, have the potential of ED as a side effect. These procedures can damage the nerves and blood vessels responsible for an erection.
Overall, psychological conditions are a less predominant cause of erectile dysfunction compared to physical conditions. The mind and body work together to produce an erection and that interaction can be affected by certain situations or conditions, which may include:
Pressure to perform during sex: This is better known as “performance anxiety” and is among the most common psychological causes of erectile dysfunction. It can spiral out of control and make ED chronic, which can lead to relationship conflicts.
Depression: Fatigue, feelings of guilt or worthlessness, and trouble sleeping are well known symptoms of depression. A less talked about but common symptom of this mental disorder is ED.
Stress: Whether at work or at home, stress can be a significant contributor to erectile dysfunction. In addition, it can have a detrimental effect on hormones critical to the erectile process.
Reliance on ED treatment: In today’s society, the recreational use of ED treatment medication has become popular. Over time, men may develop a psychological reliance on these medications and feel an erection is not obtainable without them.
ED treatment is recommended sooner than later because of the physical and psychological tolls the condition may take. As a result, ED treatment may consist of changes in lifestyle, prescription medications, external aids, and/or a new, innovative treatment known as low-intensity shockwave therapy.
ED treatment should be comprehensive and starts with lifestyle measures that you can implement on your own, which may include the following:
Regular exercise: Many men find that their ED improves when they exercise regularly. You should be sure to consult your physician before the commencement of a regular exercise regimen to ensure that the type of exercise you choose is suitable.
Lose weight: Obesity or being overweight can damage the arteries and veins that are crucial for blood flow into the penis for an erection. Losing weight may also help ED by lowering inflammation, increasing testosterone, relieving depression, and boosting self-confidence.
Quit smoking: Many men who quit smoking often report improvement in erectile dysfunction. Smoking cessation aids include nicotine patches, gums, sprays, and lozenges as well as prescription medications.
Eat a healthy diet: Increasing your dietary intake of fruits, vegetables, nuts, fish, and whole grains not only has the potential to lead to improvement in ED but also may combat the development of chronic diseases that often lead to erectile dysfunction.
Control your blood sugar: It is no secret that diabetes is a major contributor to ED. Managing diabetes well with diet, exercise, and medications has the potential to reverse damage to blood vessels and nerves, thereby improving erectile dysfunction.
Treat high blood pressure: High blood pressure (hypertension), is a common cause of erectile dysfunction, as it can interfere with blood flow to the penis. Exercise, a low sodium diet, and prescription medications can not only manage hypertension but also lead to improvement in ED.
Treat depression: This is a catch 22 as depression may lead to ED and erectile dysfunction may lead to depression. Nevertheless, adequate treatment of your depression has the potential to improve ED.
Remain sexually active: Regular sexual intercourse may be protective against erectile dysfunction. Having sex less than once a week may increase your chances of developing ED.
If lifestyle changes do not cause adequate improvement in ED, physicians may recommend prescription medications. The cornerstones of ED treatment are oral medications, such as sildenafil (Viagra®), vardenafil (Levitra®), tadalafil (Cialis®), and avanafil (Stendra®). They belong to a class of medications referred to as phosphodiesterase type 5 (PDE5) inhibitors, which work by increasing the diameter of blood vessels, and therefore blood flow, to the penis. As with any prescription medication, there is the potential for side effects with PDE5 inhibitors, which may include nasal congestion, headaches, or visual changes.
Because ED treatment with oral medications is not always successful, the next level of ED treatment that may be considered is an external aid. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved external aids for ED treatment include penile injections or suppositories, vacuum constriction devices, or penile surgery for the placement of semirigid or inflatable implants. Currently, alprostadil is the only medication approved for penile self-injections or suppositories. Keep in mind that if your ED treatment provides an erection lasting longer than 4 hours, emergency medical evaluation may be required. You may be experiencing priapism, which is a painful prolonged erection that can lead to permanent penile damage and untreatable erectile dysfunction. All of these external aid approaches to ED treatment have fair to excellent results.
Low-intensity shockwave therapy (PulseWave)
Low-intensity shockwave (LISWT) therapy represents state-of-the-art non-invasive ED treatment. LISWT can be used in all men who suffer from ED or those who do not but simply wish to improve the quality of their erections, increase sexual sensitivity, and possibly promote longer duration of sexual activity. This new technology utilizes sound wave energy to promote repair of damaged blood vessels and stimulate the growth of new blood vessels, thereby increasing blood flow to the penis. The result is an ED treatment providing more rigid and easier to maintain erections. Most men (70-80%) report improvement in erectile dysfunction after only 6 in-office treatment sessions with LISWT, and the majority of these men had maintenance of their positive effects for at least a year, maybe 2.
Because of its potential for devastating physical and emotional effects, the importance of treating erectile dysfunction as soon as possible should be emphasized. If you are seeking ED treatment, do not hesitate to contact Comprehensive Urology today for an initial consultation. The board-certified physicians at Comprehensive Urology are specialists in the treatment of erectile dysfunction and will formulate a personalized treatment plan, providing you with the best possible outcomes for ED treatment.
While erectile dysfunction (ED) is widely thought to be an issue of older men, ED can also affect younger men, with some even developing the condition while in college. In a study published in the Journal of Sexual Medicine, 25% of men presenting for first-time treatment of erectile dysfunction were younger than the age of 40. Even more interesting was the fact that almost half (48.8%) of these young men with ED had severe cases of the condition. This study suggests that ED in young men is more commonplace than previously thought. In this current “hookup culture,” younger women report that erectile dysfunction among their male partners happens more often than you think or more than those young men would like to readily admit. As a result, the stigma associated with erectile dysfunction may explain why ED in young men is not being treated very often.
ED in Young Men Is More Common Than You Think
Overall, only 33% of all men experiencing ED, regardless of age, are seeking treatment. Another confounding factor is the attitude of health care professionals toward young men with erectile dysfunction. Many physicians erroneously assume that ED in young men is either temporary or psychological in nature, which may inevitably lead to bias and prevents young males from obtaining the care they need and are entitled to for their very real problem.
What Causes ED in Young Males?
ED in young men is typically not a life-threatening condition, although some men feel it’s the end of the world. In general, the causes of ED in young men, like older men, fall into one of two broad categories—psychological or physical. In rare instances, erectile dysfunction may be a combination of the two. One of the first considerations for young men is whether the ED is occasional or chronic. Occasional ED is somewhat normal and can usually be attributed to psychological factors. In fact, anxiety is the most common cause of erectile dysfunction in young men. When erectile dysfunction is chronic, there is a very high probability that its origins are biological, in other words physical.
Psychological Causes of ED
Psychological factors may be responsible for ED in young men. These factors may include:
Fear of sexual failure, also known as performance anxiety
Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
It is also worth noting that many medications used for the treatment of high blood pressure or depression and other psychological disorders may themselves cause erectile dysfunction. For example, many of the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), which are the primary treatments for depression and anxiety, can not only cause ED but also ejaculatory dysfunction in males. Examples of commonly used SSRIs include fluoxetine (Prozac®), paroxetine (Paxil®), sertraline (Zoloft®), citalopram (Celexa®), and escitalopram (Lexapro®).
Physical Causes of ED
The experiences of younger men are very different compared to those of older men, and ED is no different. Young men are more likely to abuse alcohol and illicit drugs than older men, making these substances more likely to be contributing factors for erectile dysfunction. For example, daily marijuana smokers are three times more likely to develop ED compared to those who don’t use it at all. Also, young men with ED are more likely to be smokers. In fact, your risk of developing erectile dysfunction is increased by 60% if you smoke more than one pack daily. Electronic, or E-, cigarettes are becoming wildly popular, especially among young males, but they contain nicotine and other harmful chemicals and may have the same ED-causing effect as regular cigarettes. Furthermore, ED in young men is much more likely to be the result of physical trauma rather than a medical diagnosis. For example, a sports injury or a sexual injury.
Occasionally, ED in young men can be a symptom of something more sinister. For many older men, and some younger men, chronic diseases such as diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, and kidney disease are often contributing factors to erectile dysfunction. For instance, 35% to 75% of men with diabetes will experience some degree of ED, and a great majority of men with high blood pressure (68%) are plagued by erectile dysfunction. Some young men can attribute their ED to hormone imbalance, specifically underproduction of the male hormone testosterone (hypogonadism). Additionally, many of the medications used to treat the aforementioned chronic diseases may themselves cause ED. Upwards of 200 prescription medications list erectile dysfunction as a potential side effect, including antidepressant or antianxiety medications, blood pressure medications, and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs).
Treatment for ED in Young Males
Although your chances of experiencing erectile dysfunction increase with age, it does not have to be a certainty of aging, especially in men experiencing it at a young age. Treatment for ED in young males can help restore self-confidence and even sometimes repair intimate relationships. For the majority of young men with ED, lifestyle changes may be enough to eliminate ED and bring back sexual confidence. Measures such as eating a heart-healthy diet, regular exercise, quitting smoking, moderate to no alcohol intake, eliminating stress, and abstinence from illicit drugs are recommended.
If lifestyle changes are not sufficient to improve or eliminate ED, health care professionals may recommend prescription medications. The historical anchors for the treatment of ED are oral medications, including sildenafil (Viagra®), vardenafil (Levitra®), tadalafil (Cialis®), and avanafil (Stendra®). These medications, like all treatments for ED, stimulate blood flow to the penis, helping a man achieve and maintain an erection. Oral erectile dysfunction medications can be effective, as 66% of men who have taken Viagra reported successful sexual intercourse. As with any prescription medication, there are potential for side effects. Almost half (48%) of men who have taken Viagra for erectile dysfunction reported one or more side effects (e.g., stuffy nose, headache, or visual changes). Nonetheless, treatment with oral ED medications is not always successful, and 69% of men reported that their ED persisted despite oral medications.
If oral medications don’t successfully treat ED in young men, there are other treatment options, including penile injections or suppositories. It goes without saying that these treatments would be reserved for young men with severe erectile dysfunction. A great majority of men with ED (80%), regardless of their age or the cause of ED, report achieving adequate erections with penile injections. Only the medication alprostadil is approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for self-injection for ED therapy. Alprostadil is also approved in suppository form but is less effective than self-injection, as only 30% to 40% of men with ED report achieving adequate erections with this form. It should be noted that if your erection lasts longer than 4 hours on these or other ED treatments (i.e., oral medications), you should seek emergency medical evaluation. You may be experiencing priapism, which is a very painful prolonged erection and can lead to irreparable penile damage and untreatable erectile dysfunction.
Other treatments for severe ED in young men are vacuum erectile devices and surgery for the placement of penile implants. They have a fair to excellent response rate, as 50% to 80% of men reported being pleased with the results of vacuum erectile devices. Additionally, 90% to 95% of penile implants produce erections adequate for sexual intercourse. Admittedly, these treatments may be extreme, cumbersome, and even embarrassing for men, especially young men.
A New ED Treatment Option: Low-Intensity Shockwave Therapy (PulseWave)
As a result, there has been growing interest in non-invasive and non-surgical treatments for ED in young men. An emerging innovative treatment for ED that fits this bill is low-intensity shockwave therapy (LISWT). This technology utilizes gentle low-frequency sound waves to increase blood flow to the penis by repairing aged blood vessels and stimulating the formation of new blood vessels. As a result, LISWT addresses the root cause of erectile dysfunction, resulting in firmer, more maintainable erections. Data show that this ED treatment is effective. After only 12 in-office treatment sessions with LISWT, 60% of men with ED reported a positive effect. Additionally, 92% of men who responded positively maintained that response for at least 1 year.
Erectile dysfunction can take a physical as well as a psychological toll, which is why it’s so important to treat it as soon as possible. If you are seeking erectile dysfunction treatment, do not hesitate to contact Comprehensive Urology today for an initial consultation. The board-certified physicians at Comprehensive Urology are specialists in the treatment of ED and will provide personalized treatment with the utmost discretion.