ORLANDO—Men who undergo high-intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU) for prostate cancer (PCa) experience an early postoperative decline in erectile function, but erectile function returns to baseline levels by 6 months, British researchers reported at the American Urological Association 2014 annual meeting.

Tet Yap, MD, of Barts and The London NHS Trust in London, and colleagues studied 116 PCa patients treated with HIFU. Their mean International Index of Erectile Function (IIEF)-15 erectile function domain score was 19.8 at baseline. This declined significantly to 12.5 at 1 month after treatment and improved significantly to 15.7 at 3 months. By 6 months, the IIEF-15 erectile function score (17.5) as well as the total IIEF score and scores on other IIEF domains did not differ significantly from baseline.

Results showed that 65% of patients maintained potency without phosphodiesterase type 5 (PDE5) inhibitors. IIEF scores did not vary significantly between patients who continued and those who stopped PDE5 inhibitors at 12 months. This may reflect recovery of erectile function, the researchers concluded.

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For each 1 unit increment in IIEF-15 score at baseline, the mean increase in total IIEF score at 12 months was 0.60 and mean improvement in IIEF erectile function score was 0.73.