Parkinson's & Erection Dysfunction (ED)

Just about the worst insult that you can throw at a man is to say he 'can't get it up'. I suspect that there are many men who are not able to achieve and maintain an erection for sexual activity who are too ashamed to seek help. Parkinson's is a condition that can contribute to ED and there are many others too.

My advice to any man with ED is to go to his GP and get help.

In my case I was diagnosed with Parkinsonism at about the same time as having my prostate removed because of cancer. Earlier I had a parascending accident which required surgery to replace a burst disc in my neck with some bone from my hip. These were three reasons why I might suffer from ED and matters were made worse when I had to have a seven week course of salvage radiotherapy which also zapped away at the nerves needed for sexual response.

Although I can achieve orgasm, the ED left my penis flaccid and lifeless. I saw my GP who prescribed Viagra which did nothing to help. I tried the other tablets, Cialis and Levitra without success. My urology consultant suggested a drug that is placed into the end of the penis and pushed down the urethra. That did not work. There was another option of injecting a drug but my wife and I decided the grisly business of sticking a needle into my penis would put us off sex forever, so we rejected that option.

What seemed to work for a while was a vacuum pump. A lubricated clear plastic cylinder has a cone placed over one end. A small silicon ring is forced down the cone and onto the end of the cylinder. The cone is removed and the cylinder is placed over the penis. At the other end of the cylinder an electric pump or a pipe to a hand pump is operated to withdraw the air in the cylinder. The penis slowly erects and after a few minutes becomes hard. The silicon ring is pushed off the cylinder and snaps round the base of the penis trapping the blood inside. The vacuum in the cylinder is released and the cylinder taken off the penis.

The vacuum system does work but the penis is hard on the outside, becomes cold, looks dark blue and the ring must be removed within 20 minutes or so to return blood circulation. The system can be a fiddly challenge for someone with Parkinson's. For some reason I never really understood I was unable to get my penis hard enough for sex.

My wife and I had in the past enjoyed sex almost daily. ED made the cancer and the Parkinson's seem worse than they already were. My consultant urologist arranged for me to see a surgeon who could fit inflatable implants into the two main blood vessels in the penis. A pump is placed inside the scrotum (a bit like having an extra testicle) and a resevoir placed in the tummy. To achieve an erection the pump is squeezed until enough fluid travels through small pipes into the implants making them hard. The penis remains hard for as long as desired and then a button on the pump is pressed and the penis squeezed until fluid has returned to the resevoir. The penis then lies flat and limp but retains about the same length and girth it was when erect.

My local health authority did not approve funding so my wife and I made a personal appearance in front of a 12 person appeal panel to plead for approval which we got. Women who have cancerous breasts removed get prosthetic breast implants as a matter of course for their recovery and well being. Why are men not provided with prosthetic penile implants for the same reasons? Is it because men don't make a fuss? In the area of sexual health women seem to get all the funding and attention while very little is done for men.

At last the surgeon operated on me and all was well for a while afterwards until I sat down with a thump and somehow damaged the pipework and caused a blood vessel to burst which in the end became infected so that whole thing had to be removed and I had to wait a further three months before having implants fitted again.

My wife and I have our sex life back. Hooray for that.

What I have related is a personal story. You are different. It is important to discuss all aspects of any treatment with experts. Please don't suffer in silence. There is help available.
Thanks for sharing your story.
I have noticed changes in erectile function. I'm aware that PD can have an effect on this but so far I have associated my changes with my anti depressive meds. At various times I have had trouble getting firm enough to be of any use. More recently I find that I can get up ok. The interesting bit now is that I stay up for a long time and don't really 'finish'.

Elegant Fowl
Elegant Fowl, I've noticed too that achieving an orgasm does take longer and when it does is more intense than in the time before I started taking levodopa and dopamine agonists. Every cloud has a silver lining.

I worded my original post badly with regard to the vacuum pump. It was sort of OK for a couple of years before I found I could not carry on with it. It was hardly spontaneous and all that mucking about with cylinder, ring, pump, lubricant, and cone was a bit of a passion killer.
I meant also to say that I appreciate your resolve to tackle an issue that so many people would not wish to discuss openly and then to share it here in such an informative way.

It must have been difficult to face a panel of 12 people to argue for funding.

Thank you once again for sharing

Elegant Fowl
well done galaxy for putting up with so much ,i luckily dont suffer from ed and have to admit i would not be able to put up with that and would be the end off life for me to put up with that, keep stoving the wife in chap and enjoy it:rolling_eyes:
Being able to have an erection is as important to most men as being able to have children is to most women. Men with ED hide away while infertile women discuss their problems on TV chat shows.

It may be a man's world in the city, but not in the bedroom.
galaxy hi yes agree and well done for sharing your experience and putting up with all ops regarding your bits must have been awkward at times

regards leaky
I do feel so sorry for you Galaxy surper:rolling_eyes:
Thank God for Viagra on the NHS. My GP tells me we're allowed one Viagra tab per week: NHS guidelines.

Presumably parliament in its infinite wisdom has decreed that anyone wanting to do it more than once a week is a dirty old man, and should't expect the public to subsidise more than the first each week.....
i think if a man can not get a erection when in the bedroom,cuddles and hugs kissin and other things would satisfiy me,if he had this prob,not all woman would be put off,and as for the man ,its a big issue not bein able to get a erection,so its then up to the woman to make the man feel more relaxed and loved as much as possible as she can :smile:
viagra is not subsidised in australia and costs $8 per tablet.
so it gives a whole new meaning to leap year.
Cee Alis about it! :wink: :wink: