Treating Peyronie’s Disease with Penis Stretching
The number of Peyronie’s Disease cases reported in the United States has recently undergone a dramatic increase. In fact, according to a recent study, about ten percent of men in the US suspected of having the disease. Men with Peyronie’s Disease usually seek medical attention because of painful and difficulty with intercourse. Since the cause of the disease and its development are not well understood, many doctors still treat the disease blindly; that is, they prescribe treatments that have not been proven to help but have been used in the past. The goal of therapy is to keep the patient sexually active with a more functional erection.
Traditional treatments of Peyronie’s Disease
A number of treatments for Peyronie’s Disease have been attempted in the past – from oral vitamin E regimens to application of drugs in topical form such as a Verapamil cream. Topical Verapamil is administered by massaging it into the skin above the plaque. This has been found to transmit too low a dose of the drug into the plaque to be effective. Radiation has also been attempted, all with little success.
Modern treatments of Peyronie’s Disease
In recent years new treatment methods and devices have emerged and success rates with some of the treatments (in terms of reduced deformity) ranging from 40 to 70% have been noted. The apparent efficacy of certain drugs, and especially the potential offered by combination with treatments such as traction therapy, have encouraged leading researchers to engage in new research and clinical trials, some of which are already producing promising results. One of such methods called mechanical traction involves devices designed to pull and stretch penile tissue.
Penile retraction in Peyronie's disease with external penis-stretching
History & background
First developed in Europe in the 1990’s, these devices were initially designed for non-surgical lengthening of the Penis. It was soon noticed that this same external penis stretching actually stretched Peyronie’s plaque and reduce the severity of the curvature. This has led to increase use of mechanical traction therapy (for penile retraction) in Europe for the treatment of Peyronie’s Disease.
Principle of function of external penis-stretching device
A typical external penis stretching device works by allowing the patient to stretch the flaccid penis for several hours a day. The level of traction can be adjusted by adding metal sections to the length of the splint. Over time, the stretching action appears to either elongate the plaque, or cause remodeling of the tissue.
Evidence-based effectiveness of external stretching devices in Peyronie's disease
Studies confirm the effectiveness of external penis-stretching in Peyronie’s disease through penile retraction.
In one of such studies, all of the patients received some measure of improvement of their curvatures, ranging from 10 to 45 degrees of the original curve. They also gained girth and length, up to an increase in length of 2.5cm in one case. This is an important side effect of value to patients who have suffered a decrease in penile length with the disease. During this study, subjects wore the extender device for a minimum of two to four hours a day, some even longer. Weekly contact with the subject ensured continued motivation and compliance with the treatment regimen. The result was the high level of success reported at the end of the trial.
In another study performed on twenty-two men (aged 18 to 78 years) suffering from Peyronie's disease at different stages of penile retraction, the use of external penis-stretching device was found to be highly useful and effective.
The study was published in the international Journal of Impotence Research (vol. 14, suppl. 4, December2002). According to the results, when the “Penis-stretching device” was prescribed for 6 hours/day, for some months, the stretched penis length ranged 9.7-15.2 cm. Furthermore, no adverse side effects were observed. Hence, the study successfully and significantly verified the efficacy of the mechanical penile stretching in Peyronie's disease.
Based on the results of the above-mentioned studies, it can be concluded that the use of external penis-stretching devices has significantly and successfully improved the overall health (including curvature, length and girth) of the penis in men suffering from Peyronie's disease, without any side effects.
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