Glossary

This page offers definitions and phrases of various Erectile Dysfunction related terms.
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Palpation -  Feeling with the hand or fingers, by applying light pressure.
Parenteral -  Administered not by mouth but rather by injection by some other route, e.g., intramuscular, subcutaneous.
Pelvis -  The part of the body that is framed by the hip bones.
Penile arterial bypass surgery -  A surgical procedure that provides an alternate pathway to bring blood flow into the penis that does not rely on the obstructed artery.
Penile prosthesis -  A device that is surgically placed into the penis that allows a man with erectile dysfunction to have an erection.
Penis -  The male organ that is used for urination and intercourse.
Perineum -  The area under the scrotum.
Peyronie's disease -  A benign (noncancerous) condition of the penis that tends to affect middle-aged men. It is characterized by the formation of plaques in the tunica albuginea of the penis and may cause erectile dysfunction.
Phosphodiesterase type 5 -  Phosphodiesterase type 5 is an enzyme that is responsible for the breakdown of cGMP. Inhibition of phosphodiesterase type 5 leads to a build-up of cGMP.
Phosphodiesterase type 5 inhibitor -  A chemical that prevents the function of phosphodiesterase type 5. The use of a phosphodiesterase inhibitor leads to an increase in cGMP.
Pituitary adenoma -  A benign tumor of the pituitary gland. An adenoma of the anterior pituitary may produce excessive amounts of prolactin.
Pituitary gland -  A gland in the brain that is composed of two parts (lobes), the anterior and the posterior. The anterior pituitary gland produces a variety of hormones including luteinizing hormone (LH) and prolactin.
Placebo -  A fake medication ("candy pill") or treatment that has no effect on the body that is often used in experimental studies to determine whether the experimental medication/treatment has an effect.
Polycythemia -  An increase in the total red blood cell mass in the blood.
Premature ejaculation -  There is no agreement of the definition of quick ejaculation. The 4th edition of the American Psychiatric Associations Diagnostic and Statistical Manual outlines three criteria for premature ejaculation: (1) persistent or repeated ejaculation with slight stimulation before, on, or shortly after penetration and before the person wishes it, (2) the disturbance causes considerable anguish or interpersonal difficulty, and (3) the premature ejaculation is not due exclusively to the direct effects of a chemical.
Prevalence -  The frequency with which a disease or condition occurs in a population.
Priapism -  The persistence of an erection, unassociated with sexual pleasure, that lasts for 6 or more hours. If untreated, it can lead to penile ischemia and subsequent erectile dysfunction.
Prolactin -  One of the hormones produced by the pituitary gland. In males, elevated prolactin levels can lower testosterone levels, decrease libido, and affect erectile function.
Prolonged erection -  An erection that lasts longer than 4 hours but less than 6 hours. May be associated with the use of pharmacologic therapy for erectile dysfunction.
Prostaglandin E1 -  A specific type of prostaglandin that causes an increase in cAMP, which causes smooth muscle relaxation.
Prostate -  A gland that surrounds the urethra and is located just under the bladder. It produces fluid that is part of the ejaculate (semen). This fluid provides some nutrient to the sperm.
Prosthesis -  An artificial device used to replace the lost normal function of a structure or organ in the body.
Psychogenic -  Stemming from the mind or psyche.