Surgical implantation of a penile prosthesis is surgery to treat erectile dysfunction (ED) or impotence. A penile prosthesis is a device that is implanted or placed in the penis. This implant makes it possible for the penis to have and keep an erection. Normally, the penis has spongy tissues that surround a tube through which urine and semen pass. When a man gets sexually stimulated and excited, blood fills his penis, and it becomes erect and firm. An erect penis may make a man able to perform sexual intercourse (sex). More stimulation may lead to an ejaculation where semen is passed out of the penis. Erectile dysfunction or impotence is where the penis fails to become erect enough for sexual intercourse or fails to ejaculate.
In surgical implantation of a penile prosthesis, an inflatable or semi-rigid rod implant may be inserted in the penis. An inflatable implant is a fluid-filled device that can easily be hidden and feels the most natural. It has a pump, cylinder (container), and reservoir (storage area). Squeezing the pump allows fluid to flow from the reservoir to the cylinders, which causes the penis to become erect. A release valve or bar allows the penis to deflate. A semi-rigid implant is bendable and may be controlled by bending the penis up or down to give an erection. Your caregiver will make one or more small incisions (cuts) to insert the implants. An incision may be made on the penis, just above the penis where it joins the pelvic area, or just under the penis where it meets the scrotum. An incision may be made on the abdomen (stomach) and the scrotum, depending on the penile implant that is chosen. An implant will help create an erection, but the device will not increase sexual drive or fix other problems related to having sexual intercourse. You and your caregiver will decide on what type of penile implant is right for you. With surgical implantation of a penile prosthesis, your impotence may be treated and your quality of life improved.