What you need to know about: Penile Shock Treatment

Shockwave therapy is a medical treatment that has been around for many years. It is often used as a non-invasive treatment option for kidney stones and orthopedic injuries. Recently, urologists have begun using this therapy to treat erectile dysfunction (ED).


The clinical term for this treatment used by urologists is low-intensity shockwave therapy (ESWT). During the treatment, a small wand-like device uses targeted sound waves to stimulate penile tissue and encourage blood flow, which can also speed up the healing process. 

Low-intensity shockwaves have also been shown to grow new blood vessels and improve blood flow in the penis, which is essential for erections.

Erectile dysfunction (ED) can have many root causes, however in 90% of men with ED, it is an indication of an underlying medical issue, most commonly cardiovascular disease or diabetes. Disorders like these often restrict blood flow to the penis, which is what medications like sildenafil (Viagra) and tadalafil (Cialis) try to correct.

The issue with taking these medications to improve blood flow however, is that they can’t be taken by those with certain conditions including high blood pressure, a past heart attack, liver issues, Peyronie’s disease, and many more. They also temporarily cover up the issue without treating the root cause, which in many cases could lead to a worsening of underlying conditions.

The waves of pressure generated by focused shockwave therapy devices improve blood flow by dissolving plaque buildup in the penis and promoting the formation of new blood vessels (angiogenesis), helping to treat the root cause and provide lasting effects in 75% of patients. If the lifestyle causes of the condition, such as diet and exercise, are addressed, the effects can even be permanent.

  • No pain.
  • No down-time.
  • Drug-free.
  • Quick results.
  • No known side effects.

Shockwave Therapy vs. Radial Wave Therapy

It’s important to distinguish shockwave therapy from radial wave therapy, which is commonly advertised as a noninvasive treatment for erectile dysfunction available at both medical and non-medical facilities. Here are some key differences:

Shockwave therapy

Data shows it can stimulate blood flow and potentially help grow new blood vessels.
A licensed medical professional with professional training is required to administer this treatment.
It is not yet approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for use in treating erectile dysfunction.

Radial wave therapy

There is no data to support claims that it can help with erectile dysfunction.
It is not regulated by the FDA because it is a Class I medical device.
No medical license or professional training is required to administer this treatment.