Surgery is an option when all other efforts to restore or bypass your erectile dysfunction have failed. In fact, there are several possible alternatives that will permit you to have satisfactory sexual intercourse.

Restoring erections is often sufficient to restore complete sexual function.

Penile prostheses (implants)

Penile Implant

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This prosthesis (implant) consists of 1 or 2 bendable rods that are inserted into the penis. Once installed and healed, the penis and the prosthesis can be bent into position. It can be placed upward for sexual activity, then returned to a normal state.


There are 3 pieces to this device:

  • A balloon-like cylinder that fits into the penis
  • A pump that is placed into the scrotum
  • A reservoir of liquid that is placed nearby, inside the pelvis

The penis is non-erect until the pump is repeatedly squeezed, filling the balloon from the reservoir. After intercourse, the balloon in the penis can be deflated.

The device is implanted under general or regional anesthesia. An incision is made between the penis and scrotum where the device is inserted. Additional incisions may be made to insert the accessory parts in their proper positions.

Vascular reconstruction

If circulation is reduced to your penis due to vascular disease, reconstruction of your arteries may restore erectile function. This is complex surgery which is performed only in a few hospitals in the US. Occasionally, in these rare cases, the vascular defect can be repaired.