Medical Condition: Erectile Dysfunction
Commonly asked questions about erectile dysfunction:
- What is erectile dysfunction?
- Erectile dysfunction causes
- Erectile dysfunction risk factors
- Erectile dysfunction treatments
- Oral medications
What Is Erectile Dysfunction?
Erectile dysfunction, also known as impotence, occurs when a male is unable to achieve or maintain an erection substantial enough for sexual intercourse.
While concerning for most males afflicted, sporadic episodes of the condition should not be cause for any medical concern. However, if the condition becomes a reoccurring, long-term issue the afflicted should seek solutions and medical consultation.
Persistent erectile dysfunction can have debilitating effects on a males physical, emotional, and mental health. Physically it will have its aforementioned issues with an erection in addition to causing a physical decrease in sexual desire.
However. the mental health effects of erectile dysfunction are perhaps the most detrimental to a victims life. These effects include the following:
- Increased Stress
- Deteriorating Self-Confidence
- Create Relationship Problems
These effects can have a significant impact on a victims life that may cause them to undergo significant lifestyle changes.
Erectile Dysfunction Causes
How Do I Get Erectile Dysfunction?
Male sexual arousal encompasses factors including the brain, hormones, emotions, nerves, muscles and blood vessels. With so many factors influencing male sexual arousal, there are dozens of possible erectile dysfunction causes. In addition to primary causes, the initial discovery of the condition could trigger mental or emotional responses that quickly worsen the condition.
Oftentimes, a minor short-term spout of erectile dysfunction develops long-term symptoms because of the afflicted male’s mental or emotional response. A common example of this situation occurs when a male experiences sudden weight. While the weight gain may lead to temporary impotence, the range of negative emotions felt may consume the male and lead to an enduring bout.
What Are Physical Causes Of Erectile Dysfunction?
There is a long list of physical causes that have caused reported cases of erectile dysfunction. Some of these causes include:
|Heart Disease||Atherosclerosis||Diabetic Neuropathy|
|High Cholesterol||High Blood Pressure||Nerve Disorders|
|Metabolic Syndrome||Parkinson’s Disease||Cirrhosis|
|Peyronie’s Disease||Tobacco Use||Urethritis|
What Are Psychological Causes Of Erectile Dysfunction?
For some males, psychological issues can be the primary cause of erectile dysfunction. With male sexuality being tied to pride and mental health, issues with sexual arousal could cause severe feelings of anxiety and embarrassment.
Males afflicted with the condition are often powerless to stop their mental status from deteriorating to a point where they are no longer able to engage in the mental steps needed for sexual arousal. Mental causes are often cyclical as they work to sustain themselves until they become the primary focus of the afflicted male.
The most common psychological conditions causing erectile dysfunction include:
- Relationship Concerns
- Poor Communication
- Depreciating Self-Confidence
Erectile Dysfunction Risk Factors
Who Is At Risk Of Getting Erectile Dysfunction?
Aging males are typically at the greatest risk of suffering from erectile dysfunction. As age increases, the penis requires more direct touch to experience erection as sensitivity or hormonal levels may decrease. However, age is not the only substantial risk factor for the development of impotence.
Risk factors and causes are two different aspects of the process leading up to erectile dysfunction and must be treated as such. Risk factors do not directly cause the condition, they simply represent the likelihood of the condition developing.
Some of these factors are underlying health issues or medications. Oftentimes, a doctor treating the underlying health issue or adjusting the conflicting medication may be enough to minimize your risk of erectile dysfunction.
The most influential factors indicating erectile dysfunction risk are typically:
- Pre-Existing Medical Conditions
- Tobacco Use
- Radiation Treatment
- Prostate Surgery
- Damaged Nerves Or Arteries
- Medications (Antidepressants, Antihistamines, etc.)
- Psychological Conditions
- Substance Abuse
- Prolonged Bicycling
While many risk factors mimic causes, it is important nonetheless to be aware of their impact on your sexual arousal ability.
Many people are unaware of the risk that prolonged bicycling poses to them. This is especially important to be aware of as older males frequently turn to bicycling as a way to retain fitness without inflicting substantial impact on their joints. While the exercise preserves joints, it compresses nerves and alters blood flow to the penis area for a temporary or potentially permanent amount of time.
How Can I Reduce My Risk Of Erectile Dysfunction?
Unlike many other physical conditions where the afflicted is powerless to prevent development, men of all ages can take steps to significantly reduce their risk of developing erectile dysfunction.
Increasing your physical activity in a healthy manner will work to increase cardiovascular and mental health in a way that may counteract erectile dysfunction. Additionally, halting your excessive use of substances will allow your body to repair blood vessels, increasing bodily blood flow.
Other ways to reduce your risk of erectile dysfunction depend on a case-by-case basis. To learn how you can reduce your risk, click here or contact your doctor for more information.
Erectile Dysfunction Treatments
How Can Erectile Dysfunction Be Treated?
Before you seek any treatment options for erectile dysfunction it is important that you consult with your doctor to ensure that the steps you will take are healthy and productive.
After consulting with your doctor he or she may offer you several recommendations, including prescribing oral medications, self-injections, testosterone replacement, or counseling.
While prescription oral medication is the most commonly offered method to treat erectile dysfunction, other aforementioned methods are also effective if pursued.
Unlike oral medications, self-injections are administered directly to the penis to cause an erection for the desired 20-60 minute period of time. There are several medications that can be used in self-injections but it is up to your doctor to determine which you will use.
Self-injection is the only treatment that directly causes an erection instead of reducing the risk factors associated with erectile dysfunction. The medication injected works by dilating the penile arteries, allowing blood to freely flow through them.
Due to the nature of injecting a needle into such a sensitive area, it is important to consult with your doctor and receive detailed instructions to ensure you do not cause damage by pursuing this method. Even when pursued properly, 37% of users reported mild to moderate aches around the injected area which typically subsided within 20 minutes of injection.
There is an abundance of necessary information regarding self-injection for erectile dysfunction, to learn more click here.
Outside of pursuing medication or other physical treatment options, males who suffer from mental causes of erectile dysfunction often utilize counseling to combat their condition.
While mental causes of erectile dysfunction do not always require counseling to treat, if they are severe enough counseling presents the most effective option. Counseling can be used to understand the underlying causes of stress, anxiety, and partner tension that may be causing impotence.
Once the underlying causes of various mental conditions are understood, the afflicted male is often able to more effectively defeat the condition they are suffering from.
It is important that you see a psychologist or counselor that you are comfortable with in order to get the most out of the process. It is a common practice to see multiple professionals before finding the one that works for you, do not be dissuaded if you have to undergo this search.
Your doctor should be able to offer you insight on exceptional psychologists or counselors in your area to begin your search with.
Alternative Treatment Options
In addition to the three aforementioned erectile dysfunction treatment methods, there are several other methods that can be pursued. They include the following.
- Alprostadil Urethral Suppository
- Testosterone Replacement
- Penis Pumps
- Penile Implants
- Blood Vessel Surgery
Oral medications are the most popular medical method pursued by men afflicted with erectile dysfunction. Among this class of medication are the popular drugs, Viagra (Sildenafil), Cialis (Tadalafil) and Levitra (Vardenafil).
These drugs effect the nitric oxide in you body. Nitric oxide is a naturally occurring chemical in your body that relaxes penile muscles to promote increased blood flow.
Unlike self-injections, oral medications do not directly and automatically produce an erection for the user. Rather, the medication works to heighten the effects of sexual stimulation, allowing the male to experience a degree of sexual arousal similar to their previous ability. The medications will also not promote excitement or any other feelings, so they should only be used in men who are actively suffering from erectile dysfunction.
Is Viagra The Most Popular Drug For Erectile Dysfunction?
Viagra (Sildenafil Citrate) is regarded as the most frequently used treatment to combat the effects. The drug routinely brings in revenue of nearly $2 billion per year and retains an immense market share of 45% of the erectile dysfunction drug market. Direct competitors Cialis (Tadalafil) and Levitra (Vardenafil) constitute a majority of the non-Viagra drug market.
The drug is typically taken up to four hours before sexual activity at a dose of between 25 and 100 mg. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has issued several health updates regarding Viagra and its competitors since approvals began in the 1990’s. With the drugs affecting millions of consumers a year, it is important to be aware of the potential impact a prescription to one of these drugs can have on your health.
What Are Viagra, Cialis and Levitra Side Effects?
With Viagra and other erectile dysfunction drugs effecting arteries and blood flow in the body, if the drug reacts poorly in a consumer it can effect a wide range of bodily functions that can at times develop into serious concerns. While many of the reported side effects occur briefly and without major pain, the more serious complications can require hospital visits or extensive treatments.
Common Erectile Dysfunction Drug Side Effects
Some of the most common side effects reportedly associated with Viagra or other oral medication use includes:
- Visual Disturbance
- Nasal Congestion
Dangerous Erectile Dysfunction Drug Side Effects
|Bladder Pain||Burning Chest Pain||Bloody Urine|
|Stomach Pain||Anxiety||Eye Bleeding|
|Swollen Joints||Skin Ulcers||Vision Loss|
In addition to these side effects, more possible health complications associated with erectile dysfunction oral medication drugs can be found here.
Viagra Melanoma Skin Cancer
In addition to the previous lists of erectile dysfunction oral medication side effects, it has been recently discovered that melanoma skin cancer may be associated with prolonged Viagra use. While the development of the cancer may be rare in Viagra users, the severity of the condition has raised concern in the medical community.
Concerns were first raised in 2014 when medical studies reported data indicating skin cancer could be related to Viagra use. In the proceeding years, an increasing number of past and present Viagra users realized that their skin cancer may have been caused by their frequent Viagra usage.
With the fear of Viagra related skin cancer growing, medical research teams have launched additional studies as to whether the link can be conclusively proven or dismissed as a coincidence in a select number of studies.