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We salute some of the heroes and pioneers in erectile dysfunction treatment
Dr. Vincent Marie Mondat - Inventor of the Penis Pump
19th century French physician created the first known penis pump, which he
called the "Congestor". It looked and worked pretty much like the penis
pumps we're all familiar with.
A pump similar to Mondat's invention
Here's his description of the device: "The congester is held with one hand, while the other works the piston to create
a vacuum, and the corpus cavernosum soon swells, the blood gradually
penetrates into every part...we can always increase considerably the
development of the penis, excite erections in individuals destitute of them,
and re-establish them when lost." Mondat also wrote and lectured on the
treatment of impotence, contributing his knowledge to the field, as well as
this enduring apparatus.
Dr. Sigmund Freud - Psychoanalyst
psychoanalytic theories about impotence radically changed the course of
erectile dysfunction treatment, and remained influential for much of the
20th century. Cures for ED as a physical condition were all but forgotten,
as Freud asserted that repressed childhood desires and fear of castration
were the primary causes of impotence. Patients who would once have seen a
urologist were referred to the psychiatrist's couch. While this may have
been helpful in some cases, it wrongly led many more to attribute their ED
to Oedipal issues.
As Freud himself supposedly said, "Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar."
Nevertheless, his work highlights the difficulty in separating out
interpersonal issues and physical responses in sexuality.
Alfred Kinsey - Sex Researcher
With information culled from thousands of
interviews, Kinsey's groundbreaking report, Sexual Behavior in the
Human Male, gave the first comprehensive look into the sex lives of
American men, including their struggles with impotence.
Kinsey's research revealed that erectile dysfunction was far more common
than once suspected. While Kinsey's work didn't necessarily shed any light
on the causes of ED, it did allow for the start of further dialogue and
research on the subject, and provided assurance to many ED sufferers that
they were not alone.
Giles Brindley - Neurophysiologist
Brindley is known for what may be the most dramatic demonstration ever in
the field of urology - or perhaps any scientific field. While giving a
lecture at the 1983 Symposium of the Urodynamics Society, Dr. Brindley
announced that he had injected his own penis with papaverine, and then dropped his
drawers to display the resulting erection. In case anyone suspected he might
be faking it with a prosthesis or implant, Brindley invited members of the
audience to inspect the proof at closer range. A researcher who often used
himself as a test subject in experiments, Brindley had previously tested 95
drugs by injecting them into his penis. Ouch. For his dedication to his work
and willingness to put himself out there - literally - Brindley earns entry
to the Hall of Fame.
Nicholas Terrett, Peter Dunn, Albert Wood - Inventors of
Although Viagra sprang from the laboratories of
Pfizer, no one can (or will) say who actually deserves credit for inventing the
erectile dysfunction wonder drug. The pharmaceutical company is tight-lipped
about the drug's origins, and all those involved refuse to comment. However, we
know that these three gentlemen were all involved in creating Viagra. Nicholas Terrett was one of the chemists who originally created the compound sildenafil
as a heart medication. Peter Dunn and Albert Wood were responsible for the
development of Viagra in pill form. Collectively, their work has benefited
countless men with ED, and for this all three share a place in our Hall of
Bob Dole - Politician and Viagra Spokesman
When senator and former presidential candidate Bob Dole
became the first celebrity spokesman for Viagra, he gave a face to erectile
dysfunction. Maybe not the most glamorous face, but he paved the way for others,
like sports figures Pele and Rafael Palmiero, who went on to endorse Viagra. We salute Dole for his
willingness to step up and publicly admit his ED, thereby helping other men to
overcome the shame around this condition and talk openly about it with their doctors.
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