Effect of Shock Wave Treatment for Erectile Dysfunction Wanes

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Only half of patients with initial treatment success maintain benefits at two years.
Only half of patients with initial treatment success maintain benefits at two years.

HealthDay News -- Low-intensity shock wave treatment is effective for short-term treatment of erectile dysfunction, but its efficacy declines after two years, particularly in those with initial severe dysfunction, according to a study published in the July issue of The Journal of Urology.

Noam D. Kitrey, M.D., from Sheba Medical Center in Ramat Gan, Israel, and colleagues studied the long-term efficacy of penile low intensity shock wave treatment two years after an initially successful outcome among 156 patients.

The researchers found that at one month, treatment was successful in 99 patients (63.5 percent), but during follow-up a gradual decrease in efficacy was observed. At two years, the beneficial effect was maintained in only 53.5 percent of patients in whom success was initially achieved. Over follow-up the treatment effect was lost in all patients with diabetes who initially had severe erectile dysfunction. However, for patients with milder forms of erectile dysfunction without diabetes there was a 76 percent chance that the beneficial effect of low-intensity shock wave treatment would be preserved after two years.

"Low-intensity shock wave treatment is effective in the short term but treatment efficacy was maintained after two years in only half of the patients," the authors write. "In patients with milder forms of erectile dysfunction the beneficial effect is more likely to be preserved."

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