What is Intracavernosal Injection Therapy (ICI)?
If you have found that oral medication such as daily tadalafil with a sildenafil booster have not allowed you to achieve as firm an erection as you want or need, Intracavernosal injection Therapy or ICI may be an excellent option. Of course, before starting ICI, you will need to meet with a men’s health / ED specialist like Dr. Kapadia or a nurse practitioner at our office.
ICIs are essentially injectable forms of the medication you take by mouth – Viagra and Cialis. Because they are injectable, they can be targeted to where they are needed – the penis. Doing so bypasses nerves, and ultimately makes injection therapy an extremely effective option while the nerves recover from surgery.
ICI therapy is not one size fits all. Dr. Kapadia will help you choose the best formulation, which can include Bimix, Trimix or Quadmix. Insurance doesn’t typically cover these treatments, but compounding pharmacies can formulate these injections at a reasonable cost.
Don’t worry if you need ICI shortly after surgery or if medications are not working as well as you expect. This is not predictive of the return to your natural erections. Eventually, most men will regain their normal sexual function, however injections allow for this to occur sooner
REMEMBER: Injections do not replace regular VED use, daily tadalafil and L-citrulline supplementation. You need these to restore your natural erections.
What Are the Side Effects of ICI Therapy?
ICI is typically well tolerated and safe for most patients. However, patients may experience some burning sensation or pain along with injection. This sensation can last up to several minutes and largely depends on the formulation of the injection.
Follow your instructions closely as injecting in the location as instructed is very important. You will receive a detailed guide on how to perform the injections. Please follow this guide closely and do not attempt ICI therapy without a proper understanding of what to do and guidance from Dr. Kapadia.
Uncommonly, some patients may experience priapism, which is an erection lasting more than four hours. This is a medical emergency that must be treated at the ER.
How to Handle Priapism
While priapism is technically defined as an erection lasting for four hours, we encourage men with an erection lasting more than an hour to take preemptive action by taking 120 milligrams of pseudoephedrine or Sudafed. Because of the possibility of priapism, men using injection therapy should have some of this medication available. If Sudafed has not resolved the erection within half an hour – in other words, 1 1/2 hours from the initial erection, it is time to take immediate action. During business hours, please call our office right away. Outside of normal business hours, please go to the emergency room.