Penile implants have become increasingly more effective at treating erectile dysfunction. It is because of these devices, and the efforts of medical professionals such as Baltimore penile implant surgeon Dr. Andrew Kramer, that countless men are now living happy, normal lives.
With that said, penile implants wear out over time like all other devices. Typically, implants can stay functional for 8 to 12 years. Frequent use, however, may reduce this lifespan. Implants can also malfunction less 5 years after the surgery, though this is far less common, occurring only about 5 percent of the time.
In the case of the patient in the above video, his implant stopped working properly around 7 to 8 years after Dr. Andrew Kramer himself performed his penile implant surgery.
Looking for the source of the problem
When penile implants break, the problem can be usually traced to the pump or the cylinders.
The patient’s pump had gone flat, making achieving and maintaining erection difficult to impossible. While it would be easy to point to the pump as the source of the issue, the only way to accurately determine what was really going on was to open up the patient and examine the implant.
Making an incision in the scrotal area allowed Dr. Andrew Kramer access to the pump and cylinders. Visual examination and testing proved the pump was unbroken and thus not the cause of the implant’s failure to function as designed.
The next step was to check the cylinders. Dr. Andrew Kramer discovered nothing wrong with the right cylinder. The left cylinder, however, was broken.
As Dr. Andrew Kramer suspected, the reservoir was fine. This meant the left cylinder was the sole reason behind the issue preventing the implant from working.
Fixing and improving the implant
There is nothing complicated about fixing cylinders. It is far more challenging to repair broken reservoirs; thankfully, as mentioned above, the patient’s reservoir wasn’t a concern.
Dr. Andrew Kramer traced both cylinders, removed them, and replaced them with new ones. Because the patient requested for the implant to be upsized, the new cylinders had to be longer and use fewer rear tips (18 + 1) than the previous ones (15 + 3). To accommodate the greater length of the cylinders, long pump tubings were employed in the operation; Dr. Andrew Kramer had to cut off the excess tubing to achieve the appropriate length.
To guarantee optimal results, it was imperative for Dr. Andrew Kramer to replace the original pump with a fresh one. He also refilled the reservoir.
Dr. Andrew Kramer then tested the pump and cylinders to see if there were any other problems. Once he was confident the implant and all its various components were working perfectly, he inserted the cylinders and the pump into the penis and scrotum, then sealed up the wound.
Throughout the surgery, Dr. Andrew Kramer took deliberate steps to ensure the patient’s safety. This meant handling the surgical instruments, the implant’s parts, and the patient’s tissue with utmost care. He also constantly irrigated the wound with an antibiotic to prevent bacterial infection. It is thanks to such measures that patients can go home without fear of complications.