Objectives: Prosthetic surgery for impotence has been transformed by the use of inflatable prostheses, superseding the old semi-rigid designs. Our objective is to report the functional results and the complications of this type of surgery. Methods: 80 inflatable prostheses were implanted between October 1987 and October 1994. The mean follow-up was 3 years and assessment of the objective(mechanical functioning of the prosthesis and complications) and subjective results (sexuality of the patients) was made in 68 patients. Results: There were: 54.5% functional disturbances, 7% infections, and 27.5% prosthesis removals. Most of the patients were satisfied, although only 65% returned to regular sexual activity. Conclusions: The choice between an inflatable and a semi-rigid prosthesis should be carefully discussed because of the frequent mechanical complications that have been reported for the sophisticated designs. Inflatable penile prostheses nevertheless remain the design of choice. Their reliability has been increasing since the manufacture of monobloc designs. Such a device is costly, and should be compared with that of intracavemous injections.

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