Treatment for all forms of priapism aims to eliminate the erection and pain and preserve normal erectile function. Doctors recommend that anyone experiencing an erection lasting four hours should seek medical evaluation and treatment.
Ischemic priapism is considered a medical emergency and requires immediate treatment. If left untreated, the condition can significantly damage erectile function.
In the early stages of ischemic priapism, a cold shower or ice pack may relieve symptoms. Exercise in the form of climbing stairs also may help. Medications, such as analgesics and opiates to control pain, may be recommended as well.
Other treatments for the condition include:
This condition does not require urgent treatment and in some cases, the condition may resolve itself spontaneously after days or months, at which point erectile capacity returns to normal. In some instances where treatment is necessary, the following procedures may be recommended:
Reviewed by health care specialists at UCSF Medical Center.