Long term treatments for erectile dysfunction (ED)
Achieving and maintaining an erection can be difficult for many men. In some cases, erectile dysfunction is only short-lived and erectile dysfunction treatment might only be needed short term. However, long term erectile dysfunction treatment is available for those who are continuously struggling.
Multiple reasons can be behind erectile dysfunction, ranging from stress to prostate cancer. There are many options available from penile injections (intraurethral medication) to surgical ED treatment.
You might be looking at alternatives to medication such as testosterone therapy or a vacuum erection device and wondering whether the penile vacuum pump actually works.
Of course, you might be familiar with things such as Viagra and natural remedies when it comes to impotence, but this doesn’t help in the long run. Some men opt for long term treatments…
What is testosterone therapy?
Testosterone plays a key role in multiple bodily functions. It is vital for muscle and bone health, cognition, red blood cells, sperm formation and sexual reproductive function in men.
Low testosterone can happen to a man at any age. It can decline for multiple reasons with factors including stress, age, trauma and infections. If your body isn’t making enough testosterone then you could benefit from having it supplemented.
To restore the levels of testosterone in the blood, taking prescription testosterone can help to restore the levels and reverse the symptoms of low testosterone.
There are multiple ways that testosterone can be administered. Injection, topical and oral testosterone therapies are the most common. It can help to increase the blood flow to the penis.
How effective is testosterone therapy for ED?
When it comes to testosterone therapy as one of the treatments for ED, it has been known to have the ability to improve erectile dysfunction in men with mild symptoms. Unfortunately, when it comes to moderate to severe ED, it is not one of the best treatment options. 
Vacuum erection devices (penis pump)
What is a vacuum erection device?
A vacuum erection device is a non-invasive way that a man can get and keep an erection during sexual intercourse. The device can be either hand or battery operated and works by inducing a negative pressure which creates a vacuum.
A penis pump is used to draw blood into the penis and they can help you maintain an erection. It is important to remember that this is only a temporary solution for treating erectile dysfunction.
The penis is inserted into a cylinder using plenty of lubrication. The lubrication provides a seal at the base of the penis.  When using a penis pump you must make sure that you are following the instructions for the best results.
When used correctly, a penis pump is a less expensive and safer option for men attempting to get an erection. Some men choose to use a vacuum erection device alongside medication such as Viagra.
The majority of penis pumps will allow a man to maintain an erection for around 30 minutes, however, there are other factors that should be taken into consideration when it comes to how long your erection will last.
Unfortunately, a penis pump is not the best option for everyone. Those with medical conditions including heart disease or blood disorders should talk to their doctor first.
How effective is the pump?
A penis pump works well to get a man firm enough for sexual intercourse. They take practice and they must be used correctly for optimal results.
A 5 year study analysed the results of using a penis pump. It concluded that those who used penis pumps reported both patient and partner satisfaction with an improved sex life. 
Results from using a penis pump are promising. They work for most men but there is no guarantee that it is right for you. If you are not happy with the results of a penis pump it could be a case of needing more practice with it.
Surgical ED treatment
What does surgical ED treatment consist of?
Surgical treatment for erectile dysfunction can be used to treat ED. It is usually recommended to you if none of the other options have been successful.
The most common surgery used to treat erectile dysfunction is a penile implant. The two main types of penile implants are semirigid and inflatable.
An inflatable implant is the most common option. It can be inflated to keep an erection and deflated at other times.
On the other hand, a semirigid rod is always firm. The penis can be bent away from the body for sexual intercourse and bent towards the body at all other times.
How effective is surgical treatment for ED?
Penile implants are an effective and reliable way to ensure that you can get an erection whenever you want to. Studies have shown that the satisfaction rate with men and with a penile implant and their partners is between 90% to 95% satisfaction. 
Surgery is one of the most effective ways to treat erectile dysfunction.
Penile injections and intraurethral medication
What is a penile injection for ED?
A penile injection is usually a self injection that is inserted into the penis to provide a satisfactory enough erection for sexual intercourse. The needle is slightly uncomfortable but should not provide severe pain.
If you experience severe pain, you must stop the treatment immediately and seek medical help.
Once the injection has been inserted, you should massage your penis to help distribute the drug. An erection should be achieved within 10 minutes.
You should not use penile injections as a way of gaining an erection more than 3 times per week. You should only use them once a day. On the other hand, using injections frequently can cause damage to the erectile tissue of the penis.
How effective are penile injections for ED?
Although penile injections aren’t the perfect option for every man, they have a success rate of 80%.  lthough they have a high success rate, if a penile injection isn’t right for you then you should talk to your GP about other treatment methods.
A penile injection is a safe and effective way of treating severe cases of erectile dysfunction. It is perfect for those who can’t take medication for erectile dysfunction.
What treatment is best for me?
The best erectile dysfunction treatment varies depending on each person. Each treatment option will affect people individually so it is important that you do your research before you decide what treatment option is best for you.
If you have found that medication isn’t working and you still can’t maintain an erection, that is when you will want to look at other options. You should talk to your GP or a health practitioner to help decide what the right treatment is for you.
Your doctor will be able to recommend different types of treatment to you so that you are able to get and maintain an erection.
-  https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5649360/#:~:text=Testosterone%20replacement%20monotherapy%20can%20improve,the%20response%20to%20PDE5%20inhibitors
-  https://www.cuh.nhs.uk/patient-information/vacuum-erection-assistance-devices-frequently-asked-questions/
-  https://www.chemistclick.co.uk/news/penis-pumps
-  https://www.houstonmethodist.org/blog/articles/2020/feb/5-things-to-know-if-you-are-considering-a-penile-implant/
-  https://www.newcastle-hospitals.nhs.uk/services/urology/our-services/erectile-dysfunction-and-andrology/penile-injections-for-erectile-dysfunction-impotence/#:~:text=You%20may%20experience%20pain%20or,success%20rate%20is%20approximately%2080%25