In recent years, low-intensity extracorporeal shock
wave treatment as a therapeutic method for erectile
dysfunction has attracted extensive attention.
Researchers felt that a summary of the current
literature and a systematic review to evaluate the
therapeutic efficacy of low-intensity extracorporeal
shock wave treatment (LI-ESWT) for erectile
dysfunction (ED) would be helpful for physicians who
are interested in using this modality to treat
patients with ED.
There were 14 studies including 833 patients from
2005 to 2015. Seven studies were randomized
controlled trials (RCTs); however, in these studies,
the setup parameters of low-intensity extracorporeal
shock wave treatment (LI-ESWT) and the protocols of
treatment were variable.
The meta-analysis revealed that LI-ESWT could
significantly improve the International Index of
Erectile Function and the Erection Hardness Score.
Therapeutic efficacy could last at least 3 mo. The
patients with mild-moderate ED had better
therapeutic efficacy after treatment than patients
with more severe ED or comorbidities. Energy flux
density, number of shock waves per treatment, and
duration of LI-ESWT treatment were closely related
to clinical outcome, especially regarding IIEF
Most of the men in these studies had erectile
dysfunction due to impaired blood flow to the penis,
and not because of other health problems like
neurological or psychological issues that can also
impact sexual performance. These results suggest
that the therapy may not be a panacea for every man
experiencing sexual difficulties.
It may only be a good choice for men with erectile
dysfunction caused by vascular problems.
While the long-term risks and benefits of shock
treatment are still unknown, and more studies are
needed to determine the best dosage, the therapy may
offer an alternative to men who canít take Viagra or
didnít get the results they wanted from a pill, said
senior study author Dr. Tom Lue of the University of
California, San Francisco.
Shock wave therapy isnít approved to treat erectile
dysfunction in the U.S.
For more information
Low-intensity Extracorporeal Shock Wave Treatment
Improves Erectile Function: A Systematic Review and
University of California San Francisco