What is Erectile Dysfunction or ED?
Erectile Dysfunction, sometimes called ‘impotence’, is the repeated inability to get or keep an erection firm enough for sexual intercourse. The word ‘impotence’ may also be used to describe other problems that interfere with sexual intercourse and reproduction, such as lack of sexual desire and problems with ejaculation or orgasm. Using the term erectile dysfunction makes it clear that those other problems are not involved.
Damage to nerves, arteries, smooth muscles, and fibrous tissues, often as a result of a disease, is the most common cause of erectile penile dysfunction. Diseases such as diabetes, kidney disease, chronic alcoholism, multiple sclerosis, atherosclerosis, vascular disease, and neurologic disease, account for about 70 percent of erectile dysfunction cases. Between 35 and 50 percent of men with diabetes, experience erectile dysfunction.
Patient safety is our number one priority
What causes ED?
Defects preventing an appropriate erectile tissue response can interfere with reproductive capability. Erection of the penis is a hemodynamic action that tissue of the corpora cavernosa and the corpus spongiosum. This tissue consists of smooth muscle, endothelial cells, fibroblasts, and nerves that interact in order to enhance and maintain an accessory blood supply causing erection. Given the need for the blood flow during this response, it is clear that vascular insufficiency can decrease erectile capability.
In fact, vascular insufficiency may be a common pathology of erectile dysfunction. It is estimated that up to 80% of the cases of erectile dysfunction can be attributed at least in part to a reduced blood flow, typically due to an underlying vascular disease.
Pharmacological methods have been used to treat erectile dysfunction including the use of vasodilators. Such vasodilators include Viagra and Cialis. However, vasodilators induce only a temporary response and are not effective in many patients due to the underlying endothelial damage. Not to mention the fact that these medicine can have serious side-effects including heart attack, stroke and may even cause death.
Therefore treatments like Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP) Procedures that address tissue defects and/or vascular disease aspects of erectile dysfunction may provide a longer term therapy or even provide a permanent effect in comparison to other treatments.
ED is frequently related to Diabetes?
Erectile dysfunction is significantly common in men who have diabetes which damages nerves and blood vessels. Erectile dysfunction can also be linked to other conditions common in men who have diabetes, such as high blood pressure and coronary artery disease. ED is three times more common in patients with diabetes mellitus. ED in diabetes strongly correlates with the level of glucose control, duration of disease and diabetic complications.
Some other causes of ED
Some of the causes other than diabetes are:
- Metabolic syndrome (a condition involving increased blood pressure, high insulin levels, body fat around the waist and high cholesterol
- Obesity, chronic inflammation,
- Low testosterone levels
- Tobacco; Alcoholism and other drug abuse
- Heart disease, High blood pressure, neurological disease
- Peyronie’s disease (development of scar tissue)
- Parkinson’s disease, Multiple sclerosis disease
- Surgeries or injuries that affect the pelvic area or spinal cord
- Medications such as antidepressants, antihistamines and medications to treat high blood pressure, pain or prostate cancer.
- Emotional or psychological causes including Depression, Stress, anxiety or other mental health conditions
How is Erectile Dysfunction diagnosed?
A comprehensive medical history and a physical exam are needed before we can diagnose and recommend appropriate treatment for ED.
Some of the tests that we may do to diagnose the underlying cause of you ED include:
- Blood tests to check for anemia, diabetes, low hormone levels, liver or kidney disease and any other medical problems.
- Tests to diagnose any underlying vascular disease.
- Ultrasound to check blood flow to your penis. It involves using a wand-like device (transducer) held over the blood vessels that supply the penis.
- Test for Endothelial Integrity – This test is sometimes done in combination with an Ultrasound to determine if there is an increase in the blood flow in response to the medication.
What are the different approaches for treatment of ED?
Drugs and Medical Treatments for ED – Pharmacological methods have been used to treat erectile dysfunction including the use of vasodilators. Such Nitrous Oxide enhance vasodilators include Viagra, Levitra and Cialis. However, vasodilators induce only a temporary response and are not effective in many patients due to the underlying endothelial damage. Not to mention the fact that these medicines can have serious side-effects including heart attack, stroke and may even cause death.
Other options include – Injectable medicine like Alprostadil, Caverjet, Edex, Alprostadil penis suppository intraurethral (M– USE) and Testosterone replacement (cream or injectable). Penile pumps or a vacuum constriction device and Penile Implants may be options for some patients.
Several alternative treatments are used to treat ED, but more studies are needed to see if these are really effective and safe. These options include:
Acupuncture, Korean red ginseng (Panax ginseng); Yohimbine; Ginkgo, L-arginine and DHEA (dehydroepiandrosterone). These herbs can be risky and can interact with your medications or cause other problems.
For years the treatment has been either medical/drugs or surgical. Today the Regenerative Medicine offers you a new approach: Stem cells from your own fat or bone marrow, Platelet rich plasma (PRP) from your own blood can be used to repair the problem rather than simply putting a band-aid on this problem with drugs like Viagra or Cialis
The GeneratX® Adult Stem Cell Procedure for ED
Stem cells are cells found in every part of the body. These cells function as regenerative and repair cells in our bodies, replacing damaged cells and repairing injured tissues.
In the GeneratX® procedure, we use amniotic Stem cells or your own adult bone marrow stem cells as well as mesenchymal stem cells found in high concentrations in the fat are used to rejuvenate, to repair and to regenerate the penile tissues.
Most physicians in United States do NOT practice stem cell therapies as we do. It is important to follow safe and FDA allowed guidelines when performing these procedures.
Amniotic stem cells are the mixture of stem cells that can be obtained from the amniotic fluid as well as the amniotic membrane. They can develop into various tissue types including skin, cartilage, cardiac tissue, nerves, muscle, and bone.
Amniotic fluid is what surrounds the baby. When the mother’s water breaks, this is the fluid that ends up on the floor.
Adult (Autologous) Stem cells – Your Own Cells
Stem cells are naturally occurring cells in the body that help to create new cells in existing healthy tissues. They also help repair tissues that are injured or damaged. They are the basis for the specific cell types that make up each organ in the body. Stem cells are distinguished from other cells by a few important characteristics:
- they have the ability to self-renew and they have the ability to divide for a long period of time
- under appropriate conditions, they can differentiate into other specialized cells including heart cells, liver cells, bone cells, cartilage cells, nerve cells and other cells.
Adipose (Fat) Derived Stem Cells – ADSC
Adipose Tissue (Fat) is very rich in stem cells; primarily mesenchymal stem cells. Fat harvesting for ADSC therapy is done with a very simple process called lipoaspiration. It is important to understand that lipoaspiration is vastly different from liposuction. Liposuction removes a very large volume of fat and is intended for a cosmetic result. Lipoaspiration uses a small amount of local anesthetic, a small instrument slightly larger than a hypodermic needle, removes a very small amount of fat (10 – 20cc), and does not render any visible change in appearance. The fat is then concentrated using a simple, sterile gravity method. The entire process is painless and takes under ten minutes.
Bone Marrow Stem Cells
Bone marrow contains stem cells; primarily hematopoietic stem cells. Bone marrow is harvested from the hip (iliac crest) using local anesthetic and a specialized needle. It is important to understand that bone marrow harvesting for BMAC is vastly different from bone marrow harvesting for transfusion for cancer therapies. In bone marrow harvesting for transfusion, a hematologist, oncologist, or surgeon removes a very large amount of bone marrow. BMAC requires only a very small amount of bone marrow. Surprisingly, the procedure is not painful, takes under ten minutes, and causes only mild soreness afterward. It has an excellent safety profile.
Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP)
PRP is an acronym for Platelet Rich Plasma. Plasma is essentially blood without the red blood cells. Platelets are cells found in the blood that are essential for clot formation and wound healing. PRP, the mix of concentrated platelets and serum, contains factors that promote repair of tissues. PRP is injected into the targeted area for repair.
Packed with growth and healing factors, platelets initiate repair and attract the critical assistance of stem cells. PRP therapy’s natural healing process, by providing required growth factors, intensifies the body’s efforts to renew and rejuvenate your aging face. To create PRP therapy, a small sample of your blood is drawn (similar to a lab test sample) and placed in a centrifuge that spins the blood at high speeds, separating the platelets from the other components. The concentrated platelet rich plasma (PRP) is then injected into and around the point of injury, jump-starting and significantly strengthening the body’s natural healing signal.
During GeneratX® Procedure for the treatment of ED, we combine stem with PRP. Stem Cells use your body’s own natural reparative factors to harness the healing resources of the body to repair injured tissues. PRP secrete growth factors and send signals which boost the natural healing process in the body. Stem cells not only secrete growth factors and other intercellular signals to command and coordinate the repair process, they can also replace and regenerate tissues by themselves directly.
After we obtain bone marrow aspirate and blood, these are then spun in special centrifuge at specific G-force. The stem cells and PRP are then separated respectively. Lipoaspirate is decanted and fat stem cells are then taken out and mixed with PRP and BMAC. All this is done in strict sterile environment. For most procedures, we blend PRP, ADSC, and BMAC.
We also use hormone supplementation (only if medically indicated) and our specially formulated immune boosting complements before and after this procedure.
Hormone therapy replenishes the hormones our body needs to function properly using various hormones like bioidentical hormones, estrogen, progesterone, testosterone, DHEA, melatonin, pregnenolone, hcg, human growth hormones etc. Through state-of-the-art diagnostic hormone testing, using blood, urine and/or saliva analysis, we can determine your hormone levels and your unique bioidentical hormone needs. Hormones are prescribed ONLY if tests clearly reveal that your body is deficient in hormones.
Results are usually visible in 2 to 4 weeks and improve gradually over months even years with improvement in erection and performance.
Expect minimal swelling, bruising and redness for 12-24 hours after the procedure. There can also be some pinkness or redness of the skin following the therapy.
Treatment results vary and some patients may require PRP booster, however in most patients the results last for several years.
Does it leave scars?
No. There are no scalpel or knives used in the procedure. Specially designed blunt instruments are used to inject the fat and stem cells to sculpt the body areas as desired.
Do I need to be put to asleep?
No. The procedure is minimally invasive and does not require general anesthesia. We use local anesthetic solution (lidocaine) to numb your skin. For very anxious patients, an oral sedative may be given.
Is it safe?
Yes. Since it is your own body’s tissues that we use, there is no allergic or adverse reaction or rejection that can happen from the stem cells. Also, since there is no need for general anesthesia, serious risks associated with general anesthesia and being put to sleep are eliminated.
Is it painful?
Most of our patients report feeling mild pressure during the injection that is controlled with local anesthesia and some soreness in the areas treated for up to 5 to 7 days after the procedure that does not require pain medication.
How long is the recovery?
You will be able to resume your normal daily life immediately, limited by the degree of swelling that you experience after the procedure. Most patients have noticeable swelling in the areas treated from 5 to 7days depending on the extent of the procedure and individual healing response.
How long will the result last?
The results should last for several years. The results are affected by your lifestyle, habits and genetics. Smoking and weight fluctuations diminish the results.
Is Stem Cell Therapy Approved by FDA?
FDA does not regulate medical procedures performed by qualified and licensed doctors. Currently, there are no clear protocols to treat any disease with adult stem cells in the U.S. We ONLY use stem cells(not Embryonic stem cells) and we don’t alter, manipulate or store your stem cells and we use your cells during the same procedure – therefore FDA does not object to these procedures.
Does insurance cover these procedures? What is the cost?
These procedures are not covered by health insurance plans. With financing, many patients can get GeneratX ® Adult Stem Cell Procedures for a minimum investment. There are a variety of different financing options available, and we can help you find the best one for you.
One of the questions that many people have is “how much does this procedure to treat my ED cost?”
The cost for our GeneratX® Procedure for ED starts at a very affordable price of $6,500 for PRP injections. The cost of GeneratX® Procedure for ED using stem cells along with PRP Starts At $8,500 depending on the number of injections needed, severity and duration of the ED, and whether you would need one or more types of stem cells to achieve the best possible results.
A consultation with Our physicians is needed to decide the best treatment option for you and the exact costs.