Erectile Dysfunction – New Facts About Its Causes

by Dr. Nithin Jayan on  April 22, 2011 at 2:20 PM Health Watch
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Erectile dysfunction (ED) (impotence) is a sexual dysfunction where the affected male cannot develop or maintain an erection of the penis during sexual performance. ED is a common public health problem. Millions of men worldwide suffer from this condition . An intact neural system and vascular system are required for a successful and complete erection. 
Erectile Dysfunction – New Facts About Its Causes
Erectile Dysfunction – New Facts About Its Causes

Unfortunately our knowledge of the occurrence and etiology of ED is limited. The factors responsible for ED have always acted as sources of controversy. In the past, ED was linked to psychological problems and the normal process of ageing. What follows is an  gist  of facts collected from various studies related to ED:


The incidence of ED increases strongly with age, especially after the age of 60 years. A 100% increase occurs by each one-decade increment in age for 50- to 75-y-old men.  The older the men, the higher the reports of ED.


Erection occurs due to the entry and retention of blood in sponge-like bodies within the penis. This hydraulic effect is often initiated by sexual arousal. Thus any factor that hampers blood circulation in the penis can cause ED. Obesity is associated with the development of chronic diseases such as  diabetes, hypertension, heart disease and hyperlipidemia. All of these affect the vasculature of the penis and  thus increases ones risk of developing ED.


The effect of caffeine has been unclear for a while. Some studies have said that it has a protective effect on ED while others branded it as a risk factor. Newer concepts however say that coffee intake does not have an effect on ED.


'It provokes your desire but takes away the performance' is what is generally believed about alcohol and ED.  However  the newer studies have cast its doubts on this and suggests that alcohol consumption may not  directly have an effect on the incidence of ED; however if it leads to cirrhosis then the hormonal alterations can surely cause ED.


Conflicting findings from various previous studies kept the association between smoking and ED unclear. Impotent men are significantly more likely to be current smokers than men in the general population. Smoking damages the vascular system and thus leading to ED. However current research studies also shows that  when the vascular damage is already present in a person, smoking does not give any additional risk. The incidence of ED for past smokers has also been found to be slightly higher than non-smokers.

Smoking results in cardiovascular and cerebrovascular diseases and in the long run hampers the mechanisms responsible for bringing erection.

Socioeconomic status

The association between socioeconomic status and ED has not been well established. The effect depends on factors like life-style factors and medical conditions. Higher socioeconomic status has been linked to better health. Though low education is taken as a marker of high prevalence of non-diagnosed diseases, the current studies say that education doesn't have a significant effect on the incidence of ED.A healthy life style devoid of chronic diseases obviously eliminates ones risk of erectile dysfunction. Forget the controversies and lack of clarity; it would be wise to quit smoking, alcohol, and step out of the fast food culture. Sounds difficult indeed, but genuine efforts will save you from failing when you need it the most!

Reference:- Medscape

Source: Medindia

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Depression is one of the major factor for erectile dysfunction. It can stop your sexual desire mentally so when you want to perform sex you cant meet up the level of expectation.

Smoking can interrupt blood flow to your penile region resulting in diminished libido and cause erectile dysfunction or impotence. That is the reason why ED is often a precursor to other blood circulation and heart problems. Smoking is something that you definitely quit to help you get rid of impotency. It has a lot of other benefits as well.

Many things can cause erectile dysfunction like: 1. Heart disease 2. Clogged blood vessels (atherosclerosis) 3. High cholesterol 4. High blood pressure 5. Diabetes 6. Obesity 7. Metabolic syndrome - a condition involving increased blood pressure, high insulin levels, body fat around the waist and high cholesterol 8. Parkinson's disease 9. Multiple sclerosis 10. Certain prescription medications 11. Tobacco use 12. Peyronie's disease — development of scar tissue inside the penis 13. Alcoholism and other forms of substance abuse 14. Sleep disorders 15. Treatments for prostate cancer or enlarged prostate 16. Surgeries or injuries that affect the pelvic area or spinal cord

More News on:

Drugs In Impotence Erectile Dysfunction Priapism Andropause / Male Menopause Premature Ejaculation Drugs Causing Sexual Problems Peyronie´s Disease Drugs for Erectile Dysfunction 

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