Use of radioactive tracers in the evaluation of penile hemodynamics: History, methodology and measurements

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3 Scopus citations


Radionuclide tracer techniques are intimately associated with some of the early ground-breaking investigations in erectile dysfunction and have evolved along with the field. At the present time, the various investigations can be grouped into four categories: labeled blood-pool; tracer washout; tracer washin and combined blood-pool/tracer and tracer washout examinations. Blood pool studies are most useful in assessing the integrity of arterial inflow, but may also be used to generate indices of venous leak. A non-imaging version of the blood-pool test may represent a simple and cost-effective alternative. Washout of intracavernosal xenon during erection seems the most rigorous method of testing venous integrity. Washout using 99mTc-labeled substances may emerge as a convenient alternative to the more technically difficult xenon examinations. Dual-isotope blood pool and washout examinations, though complicated, represent an ideal method of analyzing penile hemodynamics, with potential to contribute significantly to the understanding of penile physiology. Development of improved pharmacologic stimuli and augmentation of testing protocols by intracavernosal pressure monitoring may further improve the utility of quantitative and physiologic nuclear medicine examinations in erectile dysfunction.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)99-108
Number of pages10
JournalInternational journal of impotence research
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1997


  • Erectile dysfunction
  • Radionuclide examinations

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Urology


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