Introduction: Low-intensity extracorporeal shock wave therapy (Li-ESWT) has been proposed as an effective non-invasive treatment option for erectile dysfunction (ED).
Aim: To use systematic review and meta-analysis to assess the efficacy of Li-ESWT by comparing change in erectile function as assessed by the erectile function domain of the International Index of Erectile Function (IIEF-EF) in men undergoing Li-ESWT vs sham therapy for the treatment of ED.
Methods: Systematic search was conducted of MEDLINE, EMBASE, and ClinicalTrials.gov for randomized controlled trials that were published in peer-reviewed journals or presented in abstract form of Li-ESWT used for the treatment of ED from January 2010 through March 2016. Randomized controlled trials were eligible for inclusion if they were published in the peer-reviewed literature and assessed erectile function outcomes using the IIEF-EF score. Estimates were pooled using random-effects meta-analysis.
Main outcome measures: Change in IIEF-EF score after treatment with Li-ESWT in patients treated with active treatment vs sham Li-ESWT probes.
Results: Data were extracted from seven trials involving 602 participants. The average age was 60.7 years and the average follow-up was 19.8 weeks. There was a statistically significant improvement in pooled change in IIEF-EF score from baseline to follow-up in men undergoing Li-ESWT vs those undergoing sham therapy (6.40 points; 95% CI = 1.78-11.02; I2 = 98.7%; P < .0001 vs 1.65 points; 95% CI = 0.92-2.39; I2 = 64.6%; P < .0001; between-group difference, P = .047). Significant between-group differences were found for total treatment shocks received by patients (P < .0001).
Conclusion: In this meta-analysis of seven randomized controlled trials, treatment of ED with Li-ESWT resulted in a significant increase in IIEF-EF scores.
Keywords: Erectile Dysfunction; Meta-Analysis; Randomized Controlled Trial; Shock Waves.
Copyright © 2016 International Society for Sexual Medicine. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.