Penile Rehabilitation for Prostate Cancer Surgery Patients

At Yale Medicine Urology, we have a comprehensive penile rehabilitation program for patients suffering with problems with erections after prostate cancer surgery and the program is run by Dr. Stanton Honig, who is a national expert on treatment of sexual dysfunction and has over 20 years of experience in treating patients with erectile dysfunction (ED) after prostate cancer surgery.

All patients are at risk for ED after prostate cancer surgery.

Patients at highest risk are those:
  • Older than 55
  • With preoperative ED
  • With risk factors for vascular disease such as smoking, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol 
  • Who had either non-nerve sparing or unilateral nerve sparing procedures

Protocol for Penile Rehabilitation

Patients who undergo either bilateral or unilateral nerve sparing procedures are started on early daily treatment with oral medications called “PDE5 inhibitors,” such as Viagra or Cialis.

If patients are not having any spontaneous erections, we start an aggressive penile rehabilitation program with penile injections and/or use of a vacuum erection device. All of these treatments are recommended to increase oxygen saturation in the penis on a regular basis. These treatments also stretch the penis to prevent penile shortening. The rehabilitation program is recommended to both restore intimacy for the patient and his partner and to improve the chances of return to normal erections over time.

For patients with non-nerve sparing prostate cancer surgery, please see treatment with penile injection therapy and penile implant therapy on our Erectile Dysfunction page.