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What are the disadvantages of vacuum pumps for erectile dysfunction (ED)?

Marc B. Garnick, MD
Hematology & Oncology
Vacuum pumps for erectile dysfunction (ED) are noninvasive and highly effective, working for about 80% of men. Their advantage over medication is that they can be used as often as a man wants. But there are several disadvantages. They require a bit of manual dexterity, and having to fuss with the pump can interrupt lovemaking. In addition, the erection doesn't feel as natural as one produced by a drug. Although firm, the erection can be somewhat floppy because it starts above the base of the penis. About 10% of men have side effects, such as pain, bruising, or difficulty ejaculating, any of which can cause discomfort during sexual activity.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.