Never miss a great news story!
Get instant notifications from Economic Times
AllowNot now


You can switch off notifications anytime using browser settings.

Panache

11,847.5551.1
Stock Analysis, IPO, Mutual Funds, Bonds & More

Now, there's a way to cure erectile dysfunction in prostate cancer patients

The procedure can improve sexual quality of life in men following a nerve-sparing or non-nerve-sparing radical prostatectomy.

ANI|
Updated: Apr 15, 2019, 12.52 PM IST
0Comments
Getty Images
prostate cancer1_GettyImages
WASHINGTON D.C.: Researchers have found a procedure to cure erectile dysfunction in prostate cancer patients.

The research published in European Urology claimed that the procedure had a 71 per cent success rate, with two participants achieving their first erection in 12 years.

The study is a first to report this procedure, which can restore the ability to have satisfactory sexual intercourse and improve sexual quality of life in men with erectile dysfunction following a nerve-sparing or non-nerve-sparing radical prostatectomy.

Of the 8500 Australian men with prostate cancer who have a radical prostatectomy each year, at least 70 per cent experience erectile dysfunction. Many are unaware of the risk or suffer in silence.

Treatment usually involves injections or a prosthesis, which can have side effects. The improved technique, pioneered in Brazil, uses a nerve removed from the patient's leg to restore erectile function.

The new procedure has been developed by Microsurgeon and University of Melbourne Department of Surgery Professor, Christopher Coombs, and Monash Medical Centre urologist, David Dangerfield.

Preventing Cancer: Daily Exercise, Veggies, No-Smoking

of 9
Next
Prev
Play Slideshow

Prevent The Big C

26 Feb, 2019
A study by the National Institute of Cancer Prevention and Research on Cancer shows that 11,57,294 lakh new cases are registered in India every year, and 7,84,821 people succumbed to the disease in 2018.Here are certain lifestyle changes that can keep cancer away.
Next

Professor Coombs, who is also the paper's senior author, said these early results were promising. Those who could achieve erections again were extremely grateful - as were their partners.

"We looked at the sexual quality of life before and after. Regaining erectile function had a significant impact on quality of life and the way the men felt about themselves," Professor Coombs said.

"When they walk back in after 12 months you know if it's worked - they're smiling and so are their partners. They think it's great."

Radical prostatectomy can injure the penis' nerves to the spongy tissue, the corpora cavernosa, which are responsible for initiating an erection.

The review followed 17 patients aged under 70 with severe or moderate post-prostatectomy erectile dysfunction, who had a sexual partner and undetectable PSA (Prostate Specific Antigen) levels.

Cancer

Between March 2015 and October 2017, the men, whose median age was 64, underwent 'end-to-side' surgery to remove the sural nerve from the leg and graft it to the side of the larger femoral nerve in the thigh. New nerve fibres then grew along the sural nerve graft into the corpora cavernosa of the penis.

All patients tolerated the 2.5-4-hour procedure and were discharged after an overnight hospital stay. Erectile function was restored in three men within six months and nine within 12 months, a total of 71 per cent.

After a year, all 12 with restored erectile function had clinically relevant improvements in their sexual function, and 83 per cent were less bothered by their symptoms. Of the 12, seven did not require drugs to achieve erectile function 'sufficient for satisfactory sexual penetration'.

There were no side effects besides two minor wound infections and three patients with temporary quadriceps weakness which lasted one week.

End-to-side nerve grafting was first described in a medical journal in 1903 but is not known to have been used again until 1992, when Brazilian surgeon Fausto Viterbo began using it generally.

Prevent The Big C

In 2017, Professor Viterbo reported on his use of nerve grafting to restore erectile function in men after prostatectomy. Professor Coombs and Dangerfield simplified and potentially improved his technique.

Lead author and NHMRC research fellow Jeanette Reece, independently evaluated patient outcomes.

"All the patients had improved quality of life," Dr Reece said. "Two achieved erections after being unable to for 12 years. This procedure is also much less invasive than the traditional alternative of the penile prosthesis."

The latest 'end-to-side' technique to restore erectile function sees two sural nerves removed from the legs, where they are not required for full leg function.

One end of the nerve graft is attached to the thigh's femoral nerve, the other into the corpus cavernosa, which is the spongy part of the penis.

stomach-pain1_thinkstock

The sural nerve then acts as a scaffolding (conduit), similar to an extension cord, to deliver regenerating nerve fibres from the femoral nerve to the corpus cavernosa. After around 12 months, new nerve endings in the corpus cavernosa release neurotransmitter (acetylcholine) which help initiate an erection.

Brazilian Professor Fausto Viterbo reported on end-to-side nerve grafting to restore erectile function in 2017. The Melbourne surgeons' innovation is to remove sensory nerves grafts to induce minor injury to the femoral nerve to stimulate regeneration.

The new procedure aims to provide more axons (threadlike part of a nerve cell along which impulses are conducted) to the penis due to that partial injury (neurotomy) to the femoral nerve.

Metastatic Cancer: Myths Vs Facts

of 6
Next
Prev
Play Slideshow

Fact Check

9 Jul, 2018
Metastatic cancer, also known as advanced-stage cancer, starts in one organ and then spread to other organs of the body.Dr Rucha Kaushik, Consultant, Breast Cancer Surgeon, P D Hinduja Hospital & MRC busts some myths associated with high-grade cancer.Also read: Metastatic cancer - everything you need to know about the disease Sonali Bendre is fighting
Next

0Comments
Want stories like this in your inbox? Sign up for the daily ET Panache newsletter.

You can also follow us on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.

Also Read

Now, a novel AI system will help radiologists improve ability to diagnose prostate cancer

Inflammatory bowel disease increases prostate cancer risk by 4-5 times

City life causing you stress? Watch out for prostate cancer risk

Sun Pharma gets USFDA nod for prostate cancer drug

Comments
Add Your Comments
Commenting feature is disabled in your country/region.
Download The Economic Times Business News App for Live Elections News & Results, Latest News in Business, Share Market & More.

Other useful Links


Follow us on


Download et app


Copyright © 2019 Bennett, Coleman & Co. Ltd. All rights reserved. For reprint rights: Times Syndication Service