JOSH SHER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY JOSH SHER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Impotence treatment. Caverject syringe for the treatment of male impotence, or erectile dysfunction. The bottle (centre left) contains the powdered drug alprostadil. This is made up into a liquid and injected into the corpus cavernosum (one of the tissues which hold blood during erection) of the penis. Alprostadil is a prostaglandin drug, which relaxes smooth muscle in the penis, allowing blood to flow into it, producing an erection. Side-effects of this treatment include priapism (a permanent, painful erection), rashes or swelling at the injection site and headaches.
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