La radiologia medica

, 114:1106 | Cite as

Effect of Tadalafil on prostate haemodynamics: preliminary evaluation with contrast-enhanced US

  • M. Bertolotto
  • E. Trincia
  • R. Zappetti
  • R. Bernich
  • G. Savoca
  • M.A. Cova
Uro-Genital Radiology/Radiologia Uro-Genitale



Phosphodiesterase-5 (PDE-5) inhibitors have an established role in the treatment of erectile dysfunction, but there is increasing evidence that these drugs are effective also for the treatment of lower urinary tract symptoms and benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). The mechanism of action of PDE-5 inhibitors in the prostate, however, is poorly understood. It is conceivable that these drugs act by reducing the smooth muscle tone of the organ, but this effect could produce vascular changes as well. The aim of this study was to investigate whether administration of Tadalafil, a PDE-5 inhibitor, in patients with BPH produces haemodynamic changes in the prostate that can be assessed using contrast-enhanced US (CEUS).

Materials and methods

Twelve consecutive patients with BPH underwent transrectal CEUS before and 90 min after administration of 20 mg Tadalafil. CEUS was performed during bolus injection of SonoVue (4.8 ml) using a nondestructive US mode. The same scan plane, imaging parameters and technique were used before and after Tadalafil administration. Digital clips were recorded and processed using dedicated software (QontraXt v.3.60. Signal intensity (SI) changes in a region of interest (ROI) encompassing the entire prostate were fitted to a gammavariate curve. Changes in enhancement peak, time to peak (TTP), sharpness of the bolus transit and area under the curve (AUC) were considered for further analysis.


After Tadalafil administration, the enhancement peak and AUC increased significantly (p<0.01), reflecting changes in prostate vascularity. TTP and sharpness did not change significantly.


In patients with BPH, vascular changes are observed in the prostate after Tadalafil administration, which can be detected with CEUS.


Prostate Phosphodiesterase-5 Contrast enhanced ultrasound Benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) Tadalafil 

Effetto del Tadalafil sull’emodinamica prostatica: valutazione preliminare con ecocontrastografia



Gli inibitori della 5-fosfodiesterasi (PDE-5) hanno un ruolo ben definito nella terapia della disfunzione erettile, ma vi è una crescente evidenza che questi farmaci siano efficaci anche per il trattamento dei disturbi delle basse vie urinarie e dell’iperplasia prostatica benigna (IPB). Il meccanismo d’azione a livello prostatico degli inibitori delle PDE-5 è tuttavia scarsamente compreso. È verosimile che questi farmaci agiscano riducendo il tono della muscolatura liscia dell’organo, ma questo effetto può produrre anche variazioni della vascolarizzazione. Scopo di questo lavoro è valutare se nei pazienti con IPB la somministrazione di Tadalafil, un inibitore delle PDE-5, produce variazioni emodinamiche nella prostata valutabili con ecocontrastografia.

Materiali e metodi

Dodici pazienti consecutivi con IPB sono stati studiati con ecocontrastografia prima e dopo la somministrazione di 20 mg di Tadalafil. L’ecocontrastografia è stata eseguita con un software contrastospecifico non distruttivo dopo somministrazione in bolo di SonoVue (4,8 ml). Prima e dopo la somministrazione di Tadalafil è stata utilizzata la stessa tecnica d’esame, sullo stesso piano di scansione e con gli stessi parametri. Gli esami sono stati registrati in forma digitale e analizzati con un software dedicato (QontraXt v.3.60, AMID, Roma, Italia). Le variazioni dell’intensità di segnale misurate in una regione di interesse (ROI) comprendente tutta la prostata sono state adattate ad una curva gamma-variata. Le variazioni del picco di enhancement, del tempo di picco (TTP), della ripidezza del transito del bolo e dell’area sotto la curva (AUC) sono state valutate statisticamente. Risultati. Dopo la somministrazione di Tadalafil si apprezza un aumento statisticamente significativo del picco di enhancement e dell’AUC, indice di una variazione nella vascolarizzazione della prostata. Non si sono apprezzate variazioni significative del TTP e della ripidezza del transito del bolo.


Nei pazienti con IPB dopo somministrazione di Tadalafil si osservano variazioni della vascolarizzazione prostatica rilevabili con l’ecocontrastografia.

Parole chiave

Prostata 5-fosfodiesterasi Ecocontrastografia Iperplasia prostatica benigna Tadalafil 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Italia 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. Bertolotto
    • 1
  • E. Trincia
    • 1
  • R. Zappetti
    • 1
  • R. Bernich
    • 1
  • G. Savoca
    • 2
  • M.A. Cova
    • 1
  1. 1.UCO di RadiologiaUniversità di Trieste, Ospedale di CattinaraTriesteItaly
  2. 2.UO di UrologiaOspedale Fondazione San Raffaele Giglio, Contrada PietrapollastraCefalùItaly

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