Intraurethral application of alprostadil in patients with failed inflatable penile prosthesis

M D Benevides, C C Carson
Journal of Urology 2000, 163 (3): 785-7

PURPOSE: Many men who underwent penile prosthesis implantation before the advent of oral and injection therapy present for replacement of a malfunctioning prosthesis but choose not to undergo revision surgery because of personal, medical or reimbursement issues. Others with normally functioning prostheses report significant difficulties with "cold glans," and they and their partners observe decreased engorgement and temperature of the glans penis with the inflated penile prosthesis, despite adequate stimulation. Intracorporal injection therapy is contraindicated in any patient with a penile prosthesis and use of a vacuum erection device may result in prosthesis cylinder rupture. In these patients intraurethral application of alprostadil may restore prosthesis function and permit satisfactory intercourse. We evaluate the efficacy of a medicated urethral system for erection (MUSE) using alprostadil to restore function for men with a failed prosthesis, and improve glans penis temperature sensation and engorgement for those with a functioning prosthesis.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: From February 1997 to February 1998, 28 men 47 to 81 years old (mean age 61.2) with a penile prosthesis were treated with alprostadil. Of the patients 11 had penile prosthesis failure (group 1) and 17 reported decreased glans penis engorgement (group 2). In 18 cases erections were observed at the clinic. Doses of alprostadil varied from 250 to 1,000 microgm. (mean 566).

RESULTS: Of the 28 patients 23 had a response to alprostadil. Erections were sufficient for intercourse in 7 of 11 group 1 patients, and 10 of 17 group 2 were satisfied with treatment. There was no device specific morbidity but 12 men discontinued use of alprostadil because of penile pain. A significant or excellent response was noted in 10 of 18 men observed at the clinic.

CONCLUSIONS: Intraurethral alprostadil may be used to restore or improve function of a penile prosthesis in patients with a malfunctioning device or lack of glans penis engorgement, with low expected morbidity.

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