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Recovery of erection after pelvic urologic surgery: our experience

Abstract

The incidence of erectile dysfunction (ED) in patients undergoing pelvic urologic surgery, the efficacy and tolerability of vardenafil-based rehabilitative treatment as first option in these patients, the role of spontaneous erection (SE) as a possible positive predictive factor to erection recovery after such treatment, and the role of second-line therapies in those nonresponders are evaluated. All the patients undergoing pelvic urologic surgery at our Institution between November 2002 and December 2003 were considered. Preoperative erectile function (EF) was evaluated by using the abridged five-item version of the International Index of Erectile Function (IIEF5) questionnaire. Study population was divided into separate groups considering grade of preoperative EF, nerve sparing (NS) surgery and type of procedure (radical prostatectomy, radical cystectomy (RC) or nerve and seminal sparing cystectomy). In total, 86 patients were evaluated. After 6 months, an increase in mean IIEF5 score of 12.9 points was found in those who had undergone a bilateral NSRP after vardenafil therapy, of 8.0 points in those who had undergone unilateral NSRP, of 11.3 in those who had undergone NSRC and of 11.5 in nerve and seminal sparing cistectomies. A better vardenafil response was found in patients with SE+(P<0.001). Among those vardenafil notresponders, 13 were treated by using intracavernous injections, one by vacuum device and three with penile prosthesis implant. In conclusion, in our experience, vardenafil showed to be well tolerated and effective for recovery of EF in patients undergoing pelvic urologic surgery. This drug was particularly effective for those with a normal preoperative EF undergoing an NS procedure. Of course, it should be recognized that the absence of a control group in the study represents an important limitation. However, based on the data from the literature, there is a strong belief that such an approach will lead to an earlier recovery of EF than without rehabilitative treatment.

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Acknowledgements

The questionnaire for evaluation of ICI was invented and created by Dr Ana Puigvert and Dr JoseMaria Pommerol of Andrology Service ‘Fondacion Puigvert’ Barcelona Spain. The same questionnaire was translated and adapted to Italian and English by Dr Luigi Gallo.

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Correspondence to L Gallo.

Appendix A

Appendix A

Intracavernous injection diagnostic test (ICIDT)

Dear Sir

In order to evaluate your problem properly and assess the best therapy for you, it is very important that you bring back this questionnaire filled on your next visit. In case of persistent erection for more than 4 h, please avoid any erotic stimulation and soak your penis in cold water. If erection persists do not hesitate to contact us.

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Gallo, L., Perdonã, S., Autorino, R. et al. Recovery of erection after pelvic urologic surgery: our experience. Int J Impot Res 17, 484–493 (2005). https://doi.org/10.1038/sj.ijir.3901338

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1038/sj.ijir.3901338

Keywords

  • pelvic cancer treatments and sexual dysfunction
  • oral vasoactive agents
  • pharmacologic studies in sexual function
  • intracaversonal therapy

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