Facts and Controversies on the Application of Penile Tumescence and Rigidity: Recording for Erectile Dysfunction

  • Jeremy P. W. Heaton
  • Alvaro Morales


In the 1960s, Fisher et al1 and Karaean et al2 independently developed a systematic approach to assess nocturnal penile tumescence and rigidity (NPTR) as measurements to use in studying penile erection in sleep. This was the first objective measurement of penile erection with the specific goal of assessing sexual function. In many ways, it opened the field to the possibility of scientific study of human sexuality. Measuring erectile capability has since been used in other applications, such as comparing the efficacy of therapies for erectile dysfunction (drugs or surgery), the effects of disease and drugs, and assessing the parameters of erectile function. With NPTR measurements it is now possible to improve the understanding of the fundamental mechanisms of penile rigidity and the physical properties of the flaccid and erect penis.


Erectile Dysfunction Erectile Function Premature Ejaculation Penile Erection Erectile Response 
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© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1997

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jeremy P. W. Heaton
  • Alvaro Morales

There are no affiliations available

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