Erectile dysfunction: role of computed tomography cavernosography in the diagnosis and treatment planning of venous leak.

Venous leak appears to be the most common cause of vasculogenic erectile dysfunction (ED), which can be treated with venous embolization. Traditionally, conventional cavernosography was used for the diagnosis and treatment planning of venous leak. Recently, computed tomography (CT) cavernosography was introduced as a novel cross-sectional imaging method proposed to be advantageous over conventional cavernosography. We created a novel management algorithm for diagnosing venous leak including CT cavernosography as an imaging modality. In order to provide a broader basis for our management algorithm, a systematic literature review was conducted.

In this article we systematically review relevant literature on using CT cavernosography for the diagnosis and treatment planning in ED patients with venous leak following the PRISMA selection process. Nine full-text articles were included in the review and assigned a level of evidence grade (all grade II). Two studies (2/9) compared the results of conventional cavernosography with those of CT cavernosography which was superior for site-specific venous leak identification (19.4% vs. 100%, respectively). CT cavernosography is a more detailed imaging method that is faster to perform, exposes the patient to less radiation, and requires less contrast material. In one study (1/9), CT cavernosography was used for diagnostic purposes only. Eight studies (8/9) cover both, diagnostic imaging and treatment planning including embolization (1/9) and sclerotherapy (2/9) of venous leak in patients with venogenic ED. Three studies (3/9) describe anatomical venous leak classifications that were established based on CT cavernosography findings for accurate mapping of superficial and/or deep venous leak and identification of mixed or more complex forms of venous leak present in up to 84% of patients. In addition to treatment planning, one study (1/9) used CT cavernosography also for follow-up imaging post treatment.

CT cavernosography is superior to conventional cavernosography for diagnosis and treatment planning in patients with ED caused by venous leak (grade II levels of evidence). Consequently, CT cavernosography should be included in management algorithms for ED patients with suspected venous leak.

CVIR endovascular. 2023 Nov 17*** epublish ***

Hanno Hoppe, Dominique Hirschle, Martin Christian Schumacher, Heinz Schönhofen, Michael Glenck, Christoph Kalka, Torsten Willenberg, Sebastian Sixt, Dominik Müller, Andreas Gutzeit, Andreas Christe, Vignes Mohan, Nicolas Diehm

University of Bern, Bern, Switzerland. ., University of Bern, Bern, Switzerland., Department of Urology, Hirslanden Clinic Aarau, Aarau, Switzerland., Radiology Center Baden, Baden, Switzerland., Microtherapy Center Bern, Lindenhofspital, Bern, Switzerland., Vascular Institute Central Switzerland, Aarau, Switzerland., Vascular Center Biel, Biel, Switzerland., Department of Health Sciences and Medicine, University of Lucerne, Lucerne, Switzerland., Diagnostic, Interventional and Pediatric Radiology, Inselspital, Bern University Hospital, Bern, Switzerland.