Delayed Low-Intensity Extracorporeal Shock Wave Therapy Ameliorates Impaired Penile Hemodynamics in Rats Subjected to Pelvic Neurovascular Injury

Hsun Shuan Wang, Yajun Ruan, Lia Banie, Kai Cui, Ning Kang, Dongyi Peng, Tianshu Liu, Tianyu Wang, Bohan Wang, Guifang Wang, Alan W. Shindel, Guiting Lin, Tom F. Lue

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background: Erectile dysfunction (ED) caused by pelvic neurovascular injury (PNVI) is often refractory to treatment. In many cases, erectogenic therapy is administered in a delayed fashion. Aim: To evaluate penile hemodynamic effects and histologic changes associated with delayed low-intensity extracorporeal shock wave therapy (Li-ESWT) after PNVI ED in a rat model. We visualized images using immunofluorescence and 3-dimensional imaging of solvent-cleared organs (3DISCO), a novel imaging technique. Methods: A total of 32 Sprague-Dawley male rats aged 12 weeks were divided equally into 4 groups: sham surgery as normal controls (NC), PNVI controls (PC), PNVI with very-low-energy Li-ESWT (PVL), and PNVI with low-energy Li-ESWT (PL). Bilateral cavernous nerve crush and internal pudendal bundle ligation were performed in the 3 PNVI groups. Li-ESWT was administered twice a week for 4 weeks in the PL and PVL groups starting at 4 weeks after PNVI. Outcomes: Intracavernous pressure (ICP) studies (normalized to mean arterial pressure [MAP]) were conducted in all subject animals. After testing, tissue was harvested for immunofluorescence staining and 3DISCO analysis. Results: Mean ICP/MAP was lower in PC animals compared with NC animals (0.37 ± 0.03 vs 0.91 ± 0.03, respectively; P = .001). The ICP/MAP ratio was significantly higher in PVL and PL animals (0.66 ± 0.07 and 0.82 ± 0.05, respectively) compared with PC animals (P = .002 and .001, respectively). Detailed microstructures and trajectories of nerves and vessels were identified with immunofluorescence and 3DISCO. The PC group had lower density of nerves, axons, neuronal nitric oxide synthase–positive nerves, and Schwann cells in the dorsal penis. Animals in the PL group had significantly higher expression of all of these markers compared with PC animals. Clinical Implications: Li-EWST may have utility in the management of severe ED related to PNVI from severe pelvic injury or radical pelvic surgeries, even when administered in a delayed fashion. Strength & Limitations: This study of a severe ED phenotype involved treatment administered in a delayed fashion, which is more consistent with how therapy likely would be delivered in a real-world clinical context. Moreover, because the treatment commenced at 4 weeks after injury, when nerve and tissue atrophy have already occurred, the results imply that Li-ESWT can be used for regenerative therapy. Additional studies on dose optimization and treatment interval are needed to inform the design of human clinical trials. Conclusion: Li-ESWT ameliorates the negative functional and histologic effects of severe pelvic neurovascular injury in a rat model system. 3DISCO provides high-resolution images of neuroanatomy and neural regeneration. Wang HS, Ruan Y, Banie L, et al. Delayed Low-Intensity Extracorporeal Shock Wave Therapy Ameliorates Impaired Penile Hemodynamics in Rats Subjected to Pelvic Neurovascular Injury. J Sex Med 2018;XX:XX–XX.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalJournal of Sexual Medicine
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - Jan 1 2018

Keywords

  • 3-Dimensional Imaging of Solvent-Cleared Organs
  • Erectile Dysfunction
  • Low-Intensity Shock Wave Therapy
  • Nerve Regeneration
  • Pelvic Neurovascular Injury

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Reproductive Medicine
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology
  • Urology

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