Is it possible that the Beach Boys knew something about how to get an erect penis that the rest of us didn’t? Guys who pay careful attention to articles about penis care may have noticed that scientists think “good vibrations” may be able to help guys who have problems with erectile dysfunction.
This information comes from a medical journal, European Urology, which published an article entitled “Low-Intensity Electrocorporeal Shock Wave Treatment Improves Erectile Function: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis.” This is a retrospective literature study, which in this case means that the scientists looked through the existing medical literature to find studies dealing with a process called LIST (Low-Intensity Shock Wave Treatment) in treating erectile dysfunction. They then examined the findings from each of the studies and presented an analysis of those findings in this paper.
So what exactly is LIST? Although some news outlets that reported on this study characterized it as an electrical shock treatment, that’s not completely accurate. Actually, rather than sending electrical stimulation through the penis, LIST sends sound waves – vibrations – instead. This stimulation is supposed to encourage an erect penis.
Does it work? The data are not conclusive, but they are encouraging. In looking at 14 previously published studies, the scientists found that 833 men were involved. Although the results varied from one study to another, when the data were examined as a group, they showed that men who were selected to receive LIST-based therapy found that their erectile function was twice as good after the therapy compared to before.
How it works
It’s significant that most of the men involved in these studies reported having erectile dysfunction due to mechanical reasons, rather than to psychological ones or nerve damage. For most of the men, impeded blood flow was the likely reason that their erect penis was not reaching its full potential – or reaching any potential at all, in some cases. So the vibration-based therapy was somehow effective in helping blood to flow more readily into the penis.
But how did it create a panacea for men with vascular-based erectile dysfunction? More studies would be needed to determine this, but one theory is that LIST helps to create new blood vessels in the penis. The vibrations get into the tissue of the penis and modify that tissue so that new vessels can form. (This process is sometimes known as neovascularization.)
Is it likely?
That’s not necessarily as farfetched as it seems. Think back on how muscle is made. A man exercises, and all those reps that he does while pushing himself cause little tears to form in the muscle tissue. When the body is at rest, it goes about repairing and healing those tears, which it does by covering it up with new muscle tissue.
Much the same thing may be happening when the penis is treated to therapy using sound waves. The penile vascular tissue is bounced around, creating little tears; when they are healed, new vessels are formed, just as new muscle is formed after exercise.
Although it will take future studies to test this hypothesis and to determine how (or if) LIST can be used safely beyond a clinical trials setting, the results do seem encouraging.
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