GainsWave Therapy for Erectile Dysfunction - Does It Work? (2024)

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Written byEmily OrofinoUpdated on July 21, 2023

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What it is

Pros and cons

How much it costs

How it works

Vs. shockwave therapy

Whether it works

How long results last

Risks and side effects

If it makes you bigger

Written byEmily OrofinoUpdated on July 21, 2023

You can trust RealSelf content to be unbiased and medically accurate. Learn more about our content standards.

GainsWave is a noninvasive treatment for erectile dysfunction (ED) that uses low-intensity sound waves, also known as low-intensity extracorporeal shockwave therapy. ”When low intensity shock waves are applied to human tissue, therapeutic energy is released via a process called cavitation and the formation of microscopic nitric oxide bubbles,” explains Dr. H. William Song, a physician offering GainsWave therapy in Oakland, New Jersey.

This process stimulates the growth of new blood vessels, while breaking down micro-plaque formations in the penis that can affect erectile function.

Increased blood flow can improve and strengthen erections, enhancing sexual health and sexual performance.

Pros

  • GainsWave treatment of erectile dysfunction boasts a 75% success rate in improving patients‘ sexual function and sex life, according to the manufacturer.
  • Benefits of GainsWave include sustainable erections, stronger erections, and better org*sms.
  • It can also be an effective therapy for Peyronie’s disease.
  • This is a quick in-office procedure (treatment generally takes about 15 minutes).
  • It comes with zero downtime; you can even engage in sexual activity at any time post-treatment.
  • It’s a noninvasive, surgery-free way to treat erectile dysfunction, without the need for treatment options like penile implants or vascular surgeries.
  • GainsWave therapy is a drug-free ED treatment. Many people cannot safely take oral ED medications like Viagra due to health conditions such as high blood pressure or heart disease. This is a low-risk alternative.
  • ”Unlike pills that eventually stop working, the regenerative nature of this treatment can help to correct the dysfunction, rather than just act as a band-aid,” notes Dr. Song.

Cons

  • GainsWave therapy isn‘t pain-free. Most practitioners offer topical numbing beforehand to make patients more comfortable, so it shouldn’t come with significant discomfort.
  • You’ll need to book a series of treatments for best results, so be prepared to make time in your schedule. ”The GainsWave protocol calls for six to 12 treatments,” says Dr. Song. ”Two to three treatments per week are recommended.“ If you have a very busy schedule, the frequency of GainsWave treatments may be inconvenient.
  • GainsWave costs can be steep, and they’re not covered by insurance. Depending on the number of treatments you need, it could become very expensive.
  • Though some patients report improvement to their ED symptoms right away, treatment results aren’t instantaneous.
  • People with nerve damage or severe, long-term ED aren’t good candidates for this therapy.

RealSelf Tip: GainsWave can also increase your likelihood of having spontaneous erections, which can be a pro or a con, depending on the circ*mstance.

GainsWave costs $500 per session, according to its manufacturer. That means you can expect to spend between $3,000 and $6,000 for an initial series of six to 12 treatment sessions.

Elective procedures like this one are not covered by insurance, but most providers offer payment plans or accept third-party financing options.

The GainsWave photos in our gallery have been shared by the provider who performed the procedure, with the patient's consent.

Here’s what you can expect during a treatment and how it works.

  • About 30 minutes before treatment, you’ll apply a topical numbing cream to help reduce discomfort. (This can also be done at home for a faster in-office procedure.)
  • Once the genital area is numb, a conductive gel will be applied, to help transmit the acoustic wave energy into and through the skin.
  • When your treatment begins, a metal plate on the device will be pressed onto different areas of your penis, to conduct the energy.
  • As the energy moves through the soft tissue, it will stimulate a healing response. Over time, this will form new blood vessels and regenerate nerves to treat the root cause of ED.
  • With regular treatment, GainsWave therapy can improve poor blood flow and boost sexual function.

RealSelf Tip: For enhanced results, ”many clinics will combine the shockwave therapy with platelet-rich plasma injections, also known as the P-shot,” says Dr. Song. Derived from the patient’s own blood, PRP contains concentrated growth factors and stem cells that are believed to stimulate the healing response.

GainsWave is actually a type of shockwave therapy. But while traditional shockwave therapy uses focused acoustic wave energy, GainsWave uses unfocused energy.

Studies show that shockwave therapy devices using focused energy come with some risk of injury, and that they’re less effective in the treatment of erectile dysfunction.

The manufacturer of the GainsWave therapy device claims that it has a 75% success rate. That said, patients respond differently to this type of ED treatment, so GainsWave results vary.

GainsWave has also been shown to be an effective treatment for Peyronie’s disease, a condition in which scar tissue in the penis creates a curvature, which can impact the ability to have lasting erections. The acoustic waves of this treatment can help break down scar tissue.

According to Dr. Song, it usually takes up to six weeks of regular treatments to notice significant results. ”The first signs that the treatment is working is an increase in frequency and strength of morning erections,” he says. ”Eventually, with successful treatment, the man should be able to maintain an erection to achieve penetration and climax.“

There are some causes of erectile dysfunction that can’t be treated with GainsWave. “Men who have had nerve damage from prostate surgery or radiation, along with men with severe ED who have not had an erection in years, are less likely to respond to the treatment,” says Dr. Song. ”However, if you can afford it, there is no harm in trying.”

How long GainsWave results last depends on the severity of your erectile dysfunction and how your body responds, but in many cases, GainsWave treatment results last for two to three years.

When your results wane, you can book maintenance treatments to restore them. If you have severe ED, you may require maintenance treatments every few months to achieve and sustain your desired results.

Lifestyle changes aimed at improving cardiovascular health and boosting circulation will help you get the most out of your GainsWave treatment. “Weight loss, regular exercise and decreased intake of red meat and fatty foods will make a big difference for most men,” says Dr. Song.

There are very few known side effects of GainsWave therapy, with the most common being bruising and temporary soreness, notes Dr. Song. When performed by a skilled provider, the risk of side effects decreases significantly.

Dr. Song notes that it is critical to have a full medical work-up before addressing erectile dysfunction, so have your health checked first.

“ED is like a canary in a coal mine,” he says. ”It should be treated as a warning for more life-threatening conditions,” including heart disease. The same process that clogs the arteries in your heart can clog the arteries that supply blood to the penis. In short, men’s health affects sexual health—so take care of yourself first.

GainsWave therapy does not stimulate new tissue growth, it’s not intended to be a penis enlargement procedure.

However, increased blood flow and the formation of new blood vessels will allow penile tissues to expand to their fullest capacity, which may cause the penis to look bigger.

In the case of Peyronie’s disease, GainsWave can change the appearance of your penis by breaking down the scar tissue and reducing its curvature. This may make your penis look longer.

Updated July 21, 2023

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GainsWave Therapy for Erectile Dysfunction - Does It Work? (2024)

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