Sildenafil Preserves Erectile Function in Radiotherapy Patients

SAN DIEGO—Use of sildenafil with radiotherapy (RT) is associated with improved erectile function in patients who are not undergoing androgen-deprivation therapy (ADT), researchers presented at the American Urological Association 2013 annual meeting.

In a multicenter, randomized, double-blind study, John P. Mulhall, MD, and colleagues at the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York enrolled 142 men who had undergone RT with or without ADT. The investigators randomized patients to receive 50 mg sildenafil nightly or placebo. Interventions occurred three days before and two weeks after RT. Patients continued taking sildenafil or placebo for six months.

Among patients not receiving ADT, those on sildenafil had significantly better erectile function compared with those in the placebo group. The study showed no difference between sildenafil citrate and placebo among patients undergoing ADT.

Sildenafil was a predictor of significant differences in erectile function and overall sexual satisfaction after adjusting for patient age and baseline erectile function scores.

Dr. Mulhall's group noted their study is the first randomized controlled tril to show that sildenafil use before and after RT results in significant improvements in erectile function preservation and overall sexual satisfaction in patients not on ADT.

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