The discovery of intracavernous injection therapy (into the base of the penis) for erectile dysfunction is thought to have started with a 1982 publication discussing the use of papaverine injected into the penis to improve erections in men experiencing dysfunction (ED).
Since that time, there have been further investigations into various active ingredients administered by intracavernous injection that resulted in the discovery of effective new therapies for treating erectile dysfunction.
Despite strong supportive evidence on the effectiveness of these agents, only two commercial products have been developed. Caverject Impulse® and Edex® are FDA-approved for the treatment of erectile dysfunction. Both products contain only prostaglandin as a single ingredient.
In addition to formulary limitations, high cost and inconsistent insurance coverage make commercial options prohibitive for patients. The limited commercial options led physicians to seek compounded formulations using active ingredients known to cause an erection when administered by injection. Patients who experienced sensitivity or side effects with prostaglandin needed another option.