What Did The Study Find?
The study followed 213,000 male participants who took erectile dysfunction (ED) medication, including sildenafil, tadalafil, vardenafil, and avanafil. Among the participants, the study authors registered 1,146 cases that involved eye health issues. These included 278 cases of SRD (serous retinal detachment), 628 cases of RVO (retinal vascular occultation), and 240 cases of ION (ischemic optic neuropathy). The mean age for all participants was almost 65 years old.
“Mechanistically, studies have found that PDE5Is may be associated with compromised perfusion of the optic nerve,” noted Mahyar Etminan, PharmD, an associate professor in the Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences at the University of British Columbia which led the research.
“Findings of this cohort study suggest that regular users of PDE5Is might have an increased risk for SRD, RVO, and ION. Regular users of PDE5Is need to be cognizant of ocular adverse events associated with these drugs and alert their physicians if they experience any visual deficits,” the authors further wrote.
Are There Alternatives to ED Drugs?
Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) Injections
How the PRP Shot Works
This process uses platelet rich plasma, a nutrient and growth factor rich portion of the patient’s own blood and incorporates pain-free injections of his own platelet-rich plasma to rejuvenate the penis and stimulate new tissue growth.
The extracted blood goes through a proprietary process to separate the platelets into a concentrated plasma. These platelets are then used for the PRP shot. The penile injection delivers several different growth factors which stimulate the cells, collagen and blood vessels to rejuvenate tissue. PRP injections could be an excellent choice for men with health conditions that are risk factors for pharmaceutical drugs.
ED shockwave therapy is an innovative medical treatment that uses low intensity sound waves to treat the vascular cause of erectile dysfunction, and not just its symptoms.
Shockwave therapy has been successfully tested and regularly used in various areas of medicine including Orthopedics, Aesthetic Medicine, and Sports Medicine. There are numerous scientific studies that show shockwave therapy can potentially improve local revascularization (regeneration of blood vessels and enhanced blood flow) on a variety of body parts, including the penis.The aim of ED shockwave therapy (EDSWT) is to trigger regeneration of blood vessel in the penile shaft to support stronger, longer, and more satisfying erection.
How ED Shockwave Therapy (EDSWT) Works
Inside the penis is an area called the corpora cavernosa, containing two arteries. An erection occurs when they are filled with blood that’s held in place until ejaculation or orgasm is achieved. When there is insufficient blood flow, the penis remains flaccid.
EDSWT directs energy waves, (extra corporeal shockwaves are the clinical term) with the goal to improve blood flow to the penis. The waves are targeted to the area of the body where blood flow has been constrained. The procedure is generally safe for men with heart disease, unlike some erectile dysfunction drugs.
The benefits of EDSWT include:
- Generally painless and low risk treatment
- No known extra major risk to men with complicated health conditions
- No recovery period