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Erectile Dysfunction

Male Infertility

Dr. Suman

Sep 30, 2021

Erectile Dysfunction is a common condition referring to the inability to get or keep the erection while intercourse which is faced by many people in their lives. In fact it is said to be experienced by every man at least once in his life. It is more prevalent in people with old ages even though it is not considered as a natural part of aging. It is normal to experience some difficulties with keeping the penis hard or firm sometimes as one can be stressed at times. Although, frequent encounters with Erectile Dysfunction should be taken seriously as it can be an indication that something is going wrong in the body and needs an immediate attention. Hence, there can be some underlying health condition being indicated through the regular Eds.

Causes of Erectile Dysfunction

It is not a general rule that if someone has grown old, they will experience erectile dysfunction. Some men are sexually active even after surpassing 80 years of age.  So, one should not avoid frequent EDs as they can be an early signs of some serious underlying health problem. Hence, one should be active in finding out about the reason for the frequent Eds in order to get treated and have a normal sexual life: 

  • Physical Causes of Erectile Dysfunction:

There can be many physical causes for frequent Erectile Dysfunction;

  1. Not enough blood flow to the penis: There can be many health issues that can reduce the blood flow to the penis like Diabetes, smoking, heart diseases, etc.
  2. Blocked nerve signals to the penis: In cases of certain injuries, or surgeries being done in the pelvic area, the nerves to the penis can get harmed/blocked.
  3. Diabetes: Diabetes is known to cause small vessel disorder and even nerve damage to the penis in some cases.
  4. Cancer treatments: If a man has undergone certain surgery or radiation in the lower abdominal or pelvic area, he can experience ED. Treating cancers in the prostate, bladder or colon-rectal region can many times leave the man with ED. Hence, such men who have undergone such treatment should meet a urologist for getting proper help.
  5. Drugs/Medicines: Sometimes, drugs used for other health conditions can also affect erections negatively. Such patients must talk about drug side effects with their doctors. 
  • Emotional Causes of Erectile Dysfunction: 

Sex is not something which involves just mind or body. It needs a proper coordination of both. Emotional problems can surely cause EDs or even make them worse f you already have them.

Some of the most common emotional concerns that can lead to/worsen ED are:

  1. Conflicts in relationship
  2. Stress
  3. Anxiety
  4. Depression
  5. Hormonal issues
  6. Societal, religious, or cultural conflicts
  7. Being bothered about your sex performance

There can be times when both emotional and physical factors can lead to EDs in your life. So, you should take care of yourself in a holistic way i.e., you should be both mentally, and physically healthy. 

Risk Factors of Erectile Dysfunction:

Erectile dysfunction can be caused because of health complications, emotional issues, or sometimes from the both. Some of the common risk factors are:

  • Using drugs
  • Drinking alcohol too much
  • In case of high cholesterol
  • If someone has any cardiovascular disease
  • In Diabetic patients
  • Obese people
  • Avoiding exercises/ physical activities for a long time.

Erectile Dysfunction Symptoms:

There are surely a few symptoms that one can notice if he is suffering from erectile dysfunction. They are:

  • Trouble getting an erection
  • Inability to keep an erection
  • Reduction in one’s sexual desire
  • Low self esteem
  • Distress for the man and his sexual partner
  • Depression

Erectile Dysfunction Test: 

The diagnoses can be as simple as a physical exam along with a few questions to look into the medical history for a few patients. Although, following tests can further be needed if the doctor suspects of any serious health condition.

  • blood test
  • urine test
  • ultrasound
  • psychological exam

Prevention of Erectile Dysfunction:

The best prevention that one needs to prevent erectile dysfunction, or any disease for that matter, is to adapt a healthy lifestyle. You should do the following things to maintain a healthy lifestyle:

  • Work with your doctor to keep conditions like Diabetes and heart diseases under control
  • Make sure that you are doing regular exercises
  • You should maintain a healthy weight
  • You should manage or reduce stress and do activities which help you in doing so.
  • Don’t consume too much alcohol. 
  • Avoid drugs which are not prescribed by your doctor.

Erectile Dysfunction Treatment: 

The treatments depend on the cause of your ED and the underlying health issues. You may have often wondered how to cure erectile dysfunction but didn’t find any competent resource for the information but let the truth be told to you, you can have many options as treatments based on your conditions. Your doctor is the one responsible for telling you about the advantages and disadvantages of each of these options.

The treatments are as following:

  • Oral Medicines:

There are many erectile dysfunction medicines given as oral medications for erectile dysfunction treatment. They are;

  • Viagra
  • Tadalfil
  • Levitra
  • Stendra

All of the above drusgs are muscle relaxants i.e., they make the muscles in the penis relax which increases the blood flow and hence, the erection can occur in response to a sexual stimulus. These medications vary in their dosage so you need your doctor to prescribe you one considering all of your medical data and history.

There are also other medications in addition to the ones given above that can help in case of erectile dysfunction like Alprostadil and testosterone replacement.

  • Penis Pumps, implants, and surgery:

Penis Pump: It is a hollow tube powered by either battery or hand which is placed over the penis and then the pump sucks the air out inside the tube which pulls the blood into the penis. Once you get the erection, you can slip a tension ring (in the base of the penis) to hold the erection. You can remove the ring after doing intercourse. Although, it can restrict the ejaculation effectively yet bruising can occur in this as the only side effect.

Penile Implants: Devices are placed on both sides of the penis which consist of inflatable or bendable rods allowing you to control when and how long to have the erection. The bendable rods keep the penis erected but bendable. 

Doctors don’t usually recommend these implants until other methods have been tried first. Such implants are said to give more satisfaction to those who have tried and failed other therapies/treatments first. As, in the case of surgery, there are chances of infection. If you have certain infections like infection in the urinary tract, these implants are not recommended.

  1. Exercises: Studies have revealed that specifically, moderate to extreme aerobic activity can help in cases of erectile dysfunction. Even regular exercises for that matter, can reduce the risk of erectile dysfunction. You can discuss an exercise plan based on your requirement with the doctor.

  2. Psychological counseling: There are a lot of times when erectile dysfunction is caused because of anxiety, stress and depression. In some cases, the condition itself can create stress and tension in your relationship. Getting the help of a psychological counselor can really help you in such cases.

  3. Other alternative medicines: You should not take any medication without asking from your doctor as you don’t know whether it is safe for you or not. Some of these medications can be dangerous to you. The FDA has issued warnings on several types of ‘herbal Viagra’ as these can comprise of certain harmful drugs which often cause low blood pressure as can prove to be fatal for someone taking nitrates.  

Conclusion:

Erectile dysfunction is a very common condition that can be faced by any man at least once in their life. You have to be logical while dealing with it and not hesitate in going to a doctor. It is not something to be ashamed for. You just need a competent doctor and, in some cases, even counselling to help you. You should try to live a physically active and a healthy lifestyle as that can significantly improve the erectile dysfunction.  If regular exercises and taking all the preventions don’t work then you need to get the required medical help. The quote by Norman Cousins fits here perfectly,

“Each patient carries his own doctor inside him.”

Patient Testimonial:

“I am Raj Agnihotri from Noida. I was a public servant for 24 years and the job was stressful sometimes. Recently, I was diagnosed with erectile dysfunction. I went to FertilityZilla and I was told to make some changes in my life starting with my diet and in only 12 days, I saw significant improvement in my ED. I am really thankful to you guys for helping me. I recommend FertilityZilla to anyone fighting Erectile Dysfunction.

FAQs:

Erectile dysfunction vs impotence. / What is the difference between erectile dysfunction and impotence?

Impotence refers to the condition in which there is some interfering with sexual intercourse and/or reproduction or even problems with the ejaculation whereas erectile dysfunction just means inability to get and hold the erection.

What is the latest treatment for erectile dysfunction?

There is a new medication that has been introduced in the landscape of €erectile dysfunction treatments which is called Avanafil sold under the brand name- Stendra

What is the main cause of Erectile dysfunction?

The main cause for ED is the restriction/reduction of blood flow in the penis or if the nerves have been harmed. In cases of stress and emotional problems related to it.

What is the fastest way to cure erectile dysfunction?

If you smoke then quit

Maintain your weight

Do physical activity daily

Avoid too much alcohol

Work through your relationships and traumas.

Does ED go away?

In most cases, it can be reversed. A study has found even 29 % remission rates after the span of 5 years. Even if it can’t be cured, then also there are treatments that can reduce or even eliminate symptoms.

References:

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0140673612605200

https://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJM200006153422407

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S009401432100690X

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1743609515300527

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