How an Erection Occurs

 

Erection affected by Peyronie's disease

The primary problem of Peyronies disease is the adverse effect it has on ability of the penis to develop an erection, and the purpose of Peyronie’s disease treatment is to improve the penile distortion and weak erection that is caused by the Peyronie’s plaque or scar, it is good to review the mechanism of how an erection occurs. 

An erection is the enlargement and stiffening or hardening of the penis that occurs when the penis periodically is engorged with blood as a result of a sexual or non-sexual stimulus. The primary purpose of an erection is sexual intercourse.

The complex erection mechanism can start in either the brain (a thought), the penis (a touch), or the bladder (when filled). Upon stimulation a beautifully intricate and balanced reaction of nerve messages occurs between the brain and the reproductive organs. The first thing to happen to the penis is a message is received from the brain. This message causes nitric oxide to be released from the tissue of the penis. Nitric oxide in turn causes the same cells of the penis to produce cyclic guaosine monophosphate (cGMP). This chemical, cGMP, has the ability to cause rapid relaxation of both the arteries of the penis and the smooth muscles that line the network of small interconnected spaces of the corpora cavernosa and corpus spongiosum. This relaxation response has an expansive and enlarging effect on the penis, because it causes more blood to flow into the penis and it is “loosened up” to receive and hold the extra blood that is being shunted to it.

Going up. Blood quickly enters the network of erectile tissue spaces as this relaxation continues along the length of the penis. A small amount of blood enters the corpus spongiosum, but the majority of it engorges the corpora cavernosa which expand to hold 90% of the blood involved in an erection.

As more and more blood enters the relaxed spaces of the penis, the expanding spongy tissue presses against the firm tubular connective tissue sleeves known as the tunica albuginea and Buck’s fascia. This increased pressure in turn pushes against veins that normally let blood out of the cavernous and spongy spaces of the penis, compressing and closing their valves. Now with the veins closed off a greater and greater amount of blood is trapped in the penis. When the three penile chambers are filled with blood the penis is at its maximum length, diameter and rigidity, and is said to be erect.

The glans or head of the penis, the mushroom-like end of the corpus spongiosum that sits like a cap on the end of the penis, remains more soft and pliable during erection because its tunica albuginea is much thinner than elsewhere in the penis. This thinness of the tunica at the head of the penis does not allow it to develop the rigidity that other parts of the penis achieve. Of course this is a good design feature, since the relative softness of the glans protects the cervix of the uterus during intercourse.

Going down. After ejaculation, or upon loss of mental or physical stimulus, the brain stops sending signals to the penis to release nitrous oxide. With loss of the nerve signal and subsequent chemical release, the flow of blood is reduced, the pressure drops, the vein valves are no longer held closed and so open up to release blood, and the erection ceases. The penis returns to its normal pre-erectile size and flaccidity.

A simple balloon can give you a better idea of how an erection works: Before you blow up the balloon, the balloon wall material is very soft and flexible. Put a little air into the balloon and it begins to change shape by filling, making the balloon larger. As more and more air gets trapped inside the closed space of the balloon, it continues to become more rigid and large, until a limit is reached. After this certain limit point the previously flexible balloon material gets surprisingly tight and rigid. To keep it rigid you tie off the opening, and to reduce the rigidity you untie the opening.
 

How to straighten a curved penis

Peyronie’s disease causes a problem with the erection mechanism because the vein valves “leak” and cannot build up sufficient pressure to create a full erection, due to interference from the scar tissue in the tunica albuginea. It is as thought the scar tissue blocks the closer of the vein valves, just as a kink in a car door keeps the door from closing completely, or not at all.  As improvement occurs in the Peyronie’s curved penis as a result of successful therapy, one of the first observable changes will be in the quality of erection response.

And this is why we contend, as you will read in other parts of this website, “Peyronie’s disease is all about the scar” and when you do you will fix your penis curvature and once again have a strong and straight erection

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