A penile prosthesis is another treatment option for men with erectile dysfunction. These devices are either malleable (bendable) or inflatable. The simplest type of prosthesis consists of a pair of malleable rods surgically implanted within the erection chambers of the penis. With this type of implant the penis is always semi-rigid and merely needs to be lifted or adjusted into the erect position to initiate sex. This type of implant is a good choice for men with spinal cord injuries and/or limited hand strength. Today, many men choose a hydraulic, inflatable prosthesis, which allows them to have an erection when they choose, and it's easier to conceal. It is also more natural.
A penile implant is usually used when there is a clear medical cause for ED and when the problem is unlikely to resolve or improve naturally or with other medical treatments. Sometimes a penile prosthesis is implanted during surgery to reconstruct the penis when scarring has caused erections to curve (Peyronie's disease).
Penile implant surgeries take about an hour and are typically done in an outpatient center. A man can resume sexual intercourse by 6 weeks after surgery.