Erectile Dysfunction or impotence is the inability to keep an erection firm and long enough to have sex. It is not a life-threatening condition; however, it will result in unsatisfactory sex life, self-esteem issues in men, relationship problems, and eventually the inability to get your partner pregnant. It may also point to other diseases that may need treatment. Erectile dysfunction is linked to diabetes, heart disease, and other health conditions; it may also be drug-induced. Treating those conditions may reverse erectile dysfunction or the condition altogether.
Among several possible causes of Erectile dysfunction, some are discussed below;
Some of the types of erectile dysfunction based on the mechanism involved are described below;
Neurogenic impotence: It is due to any injury to the back of the body or vertebral column, particularly affecting the spinal cord nerves that control penile erection. Similarly, any surgery of the urinary bladder, prostate, or rectum that damages the concurrent nerves may result in this type of ED.
Various risk factors contribute to erectile dysfunction; some of them are as follows ;
According to CDC, about 18 million men are affected by erectile dysfunction in the USA.
The incidence of Erectile dysfunction rises with the advancing age from approximately 22% at age 40 to 49% by age 70. It affects only 5 to 10% of the people below the age of 40.
Symptoms may include
For diagnosing the disease, your doctor will obtain a detailed history, including the past medical and surgical history, concurrent co-morbid conditions, stressors, etc. He may perform a physical exam focussing on your genitals, penis, and testicles. You may be asked to undergo the following investigations;
Some disorders are related to erectile dysfunction, such as ;
If you are suffering from ED, the best thing to do is consult a health practitioner who will advise you on treatment depending on the cause and severity of the condition. The doctor will explain the risks and health benefits of each treatment. He may prescribe medications or advise on Psychological counseling, exercise, and alternative medicine. If these measures are not effective or appropriate, the doctor may prescribe penis pumps, surgery, or penis implants. Penis implants are usually not recommended.
The medications usually prescribed are;
The prognosis is generally favorable for the men who seek medical help for the ED. Many of the factors causing ED, like hormonal, psychological, or injuries to the penis, can be effectively treated, and so does the issue of ED. For the ED caused by medical conditions that can not be cured, various treatment options are available to restore sexual function.
Our clinical experts continually monitor the health and medical content posted on CURA4U, and we update our blogs and articles when new information becomes available. Last reviewed by Dr.Saad Zia on May 18, 2023.
Symptoms & Causes of Erectile Dysfunction
Erectile Dysfunction (ED): Symptoms, Diagnosis & Treatment - Urology Care Foundation