A penile implant is a device that is placed inside the penis of the man to allow him to restore his erectile function. These devices have been available since 1973 when they were first invented. Over time there have been numerous iterations of the device and improvements to the devices that we have today. These are called the inflatable penile prosthesis, which is a hydraulic device that is placed in the penis. By squeezing a pump, it allows water to engorge the penis and develop an erection that is satisfactory for intercourse.
Patients are often concerned about the cost of a penile implant because they think that a penile implant is like a breast implant: an aesthetic procedure that is not covered by insurance. The penile implant is a functional device that is placed in a man who has lost his erectile function to allow him to restore his erectile function. So, it is not only an aesthetic device but it's also a functional device.
Accordingly, it is covered by Medicare completely and is covered by most private insurances in the United States. Most commercial insurance will cover penile implant surgery to allow a man to completely restore erectile function, particularly for patients who have a medical necessity having lost erectile function due to vascular causes, diabetes, significant pelvic surgeries, history of cancer surgery (notably prostate cancer), and numerous other medical comorbidities.
For patients who do not have an insurance provider that allows them to get coverage of the penile implants, programs are available through the companies that produce the implant, allowing for a cheaper, more reasonable and affordable prices of the implant. For those paying out of pocket, the price varies significantly from one location to another.
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