Having erection challenges from time to time is not necessarily a cause for concern. However if erectile dysfunction is an ongoing issue, it can cause anxiety, stress, negatively affect your self-confidence and contribute to relationship struggles. Difficulties getting or keeping an erection also can be a sign of an underlying health condition that requires treatment and a risk factor for heart disease down the road.
If you are concerned about erectile dysfunction, talk to your physician, even if you are embarrassed. On occasion, treating an underlying condition is enough to reverse the erectile dysfunction. In other cases, medications or other direct treatments might be required.
Symptoms of Erectile Dysfunction
- ED symptoms include the following:
- Trouble achieving an erection
- Trouble maintaining an erection
- Reduce sexual desire
When should you see a doctor
A family physician is a great place to start when you have erectile problems. See your doctor if:
You have other symptoms that come along with erectile dysfunction
You have heart disease or diabetes or another known health conditions that may be associated with erectile dysfunction.
You have concerns about your erection or experiencing other sexual problems, including ejaculatory dysfunction that is premature or delayed ejaculation.
What Causes Erectile Dysfunction
Male sexual arousal is a complex process that includes emotions, hormones, nerves, the brain and muscle and blood vessels. Erectile dysfunction can occur as a problem with any of these. Also, mental health concerns and stress can cause or exacerbate erectile dysfunction.
In certain cases, a combination of psychological and physical issues cause erectile dysfunction. For example, a minor physical condition that slows your sexual response may cause anxiety about maintaining an erection. The stress produced, can lead to or worsen erectile dysfunction.
Physical Causes of Erectile Dysfunction
In most cases erectile dysfunction is caused by something physical, including:
- High Cholesterol
- High blood pressure
- Heart Disease
- Multiple sclerosis
- Sleep Disorders
- Peyronies disease – development scar tissue inside the penis
- Parkinson is disease
- Tabacco use
- Individual Prescription Medication
- Sleep Disorders
- Alcoholism and other forms of substance abuse
- Metabolic syndrome – in which there is high insulin levels, high cholesterol, increased blood pressure, body fat around the waist
- Treatments for prostate cancer or enlarged prostate
- Surgeries or injuries that affect the spinal cord or pelvic area.
Psychological Causes of erectile dysfunction
The brain performs a key role in triggering the series of physical events that cause an erection, starting with feelings of sexual arousal. Several things can interfere with sexual feelings and cause or worsen erectile dysfunction These include:
- Depression, anxiety or other mental health conditions
- Relationship difficulties due to stress poor communication or concerns.
Risk Factors that May Develop Erectile Dysfunction
As you age, erections might take longer to develop and may not be as firm. You may need more direct touch to your penis to achieve and keep and erection. This may indicate underlying health condition or be the result of taking medications.
- There are various factors can contribute to erectile dysfunction including:
- Medical conditions specifically diabetes or heart conditions.
- Tobacco use, which restores blood flow to veins and arteries over time can cause chronic health conditions and lead to erectile dysfunction.
- Being overweight- specifically, if you are obese.
- Certain medical treatments or procedures, if you have prostate surgery or radiation treatment for cancer.
- Injuries that damage the nerves or arteries that control erection.
- Psychological conditions, such as stress, anxiety or depression.
- Drug and alcohol usage, specifically if you are long-term drug user or drank heavily.
- Prolong bicycling can compress nerves and affect blood flow to the penis and may lead to temporary permanent erectile dysfunction.
Complications with ED
Complications resulting from erectile disinfection can include:
- An unsatisfactory sex life
- Embarrassment of low self-esteem
- The inability to get your partner pregnant.
- Stress or anxiety
- Relationship problems
ED Test and Diagnosis
For many men, a physical exam and answering question, medical history is all that is required for a physician to diagnose erectile dysfunction and recommend a treatment. If you are chronic health conditions or your physician suspects that an underlying condition might be the cause, you may need a further test or have a consultation with a specialist.
Test for underlying conditions might include:
Physical exam – This might include careful examination of your penis and testicles and checking your nerves for sensation
Blood test A sample of tour blood might be sent to a lab to check for signs of diabetes, low testosterone levels, heart diseased and other health conditions.
Urine test ( urinalysis). Like blood test, urine tests are used to look for signs of diabetes and other underlying heath conditions.
Ultrasound – This test is usually performed by a specialist in an office. It involves using a wandlike device (transducer) held over the blood vessels that supply the penis. It produces a video image to let your doctor see if you have blood flow issues.
This test is occasion done in tandem with an inject of medications into the penis to stimulate blood flow and produce an erection.
Overnight erection test- Most men have erections during sleep without remembering them. This simple test means wrapping an individual device around your penis before you go to bed. This device regulates the number and strength of actions that are achieved overnight. It can help to determine if your erectile dysfunction is related to psychological or physical.
Psychological exam. You doctor might ask questions to screen for depression and other possible psychologic causes of erectile dysfunction.
Treatments and Drugs
The first thing your physician will do is to ensure that you are receiving the right treatment for any health ailments that could be causing or worsening your erectile dysfunction.
Depending on the reason and severity of your erectile infection and any underlying health conditions, you may have a variety of treatment options. Your physician can describe the risks and benefits of each treatment and will consider your preferences. Your partner’s preference may also be part of the solution in treatment choices.
Oral medications a successful erectile dysfunction treatment for many men. They include:
- Sildneafil (Viagra)
- Verdenafil (Staxyn, Levitra)
- Taladfil (Cialis)
- AVanfil (stendra)
All four of these medications increase the effects of nitric oxide – a natural chemical your body generates that eases muscles in the penis. This enhances the blood flow and enables you to achieve an erection in response to sexual stimulation.
Consuming one of these ills will not automatically cause an erection. Sexual stimulation is needed first to cause the release of nitric oxide forms your penile nerves. These medications magnify that signal, allowing men to function regularly. Orla erectile dysfunction medication is not aphrodisiacs, will not trigger excitement and are not required in men who get normal erections.
These medications can differ in dosages, how long they work and side effects. Potential side effects include nasal congestion visual changes, stomachaches, and backaches, as well as flushing.
Your doctor will consider your distinct situation to determine which medication might work best. These medications might not fix your erectile dysfunction immediately. You may need to work with your doctor to find the right medication and dosage for you.
Before taking any drug medications for erectile dysfunction, including over-the-counter supplements and herbal remedies, get your doctors ok. Medications for erectile function might not work or might be severe if you.
- Have Severe liver diseases
- Have very low blood pressure (hypotension) or unchecked high blood pressure ( Hyperion)
- Take nitrate drugs – commonly prescribed for chest cheek pain (angina) such as nitroglycerin (Nitro-Dur, Minitran, Nitrostat and others) isosorbide dinitrate(dilaurate -SR, Isordil mononitrate (Monoket)
- Have Kidney disease that needs dialysis
Additional medications for erectile dysfunction include:
Self-injection – The are several popular medications that are injected directly into the penis to achieve an erection. Alprostadil, phentolamine, and alprostadil are most commonly used to the fine needle to insert the medications into the base or side of your penis.
The goal of injection therapies is to create an erection that last about 20 to 40 minutes. If an erection is lengthier than an hour, you will need to have the medication or dose adjusted to avoid potentially long-term complications. Because the needle use is very fine, pain from the inject site is usually minor.
Side effects can include prolonged erection (priapism ) bleeding from the injection site, formation of fibrous tissue within the penis or at the injections site.
Alprostadil urethral suppository – Alprostadil intraurethral (Muse therapy consist of placing a tiny alprostadil suppository inside your penis in the panel urethra. You use a special applicator to inject the suppository into your penile urethra.
The erection normally stars within ten minutes and last between 30 and 60 minutes. Side effects can include minor bleeding in the urethra, pain, and formation of fibrous tissue within your penis.
Testosterone replacement. Some men have erectile dysfunction that might be hampered by low levels of the hormone testosterone. In this case, testosterone replacement therapy might be recommended as the first step.
Testosterone replacement therapy can be administered via injection patch, hum, gel and cheek (buccal cavity) intranasal, oral medication, subcutaneous pellet, Talk to your doctor about your personal preferences and possible side effects.
Penis Pumps, Implants, and Surgery
If medications are not sufficient or appropriate in your case, your doctor might offer a differing treatment. Another treatment include:
Penis pumps – A penis pump (vacuum erection device) is a hollow tube with a hand-powered or battery-powered pump. The tube is placed over the penis. The pump is then used to suck out the air inside the tube. This creates a vacuum that brings blood into your penis.
Once you get an erection, you slide a tension ring around the base of your penis to keep in the blood and keep it firm. You will then remove the vacuum device.
The erection typically last long enough for the couple to have sex. You can remove the tension ring after intercourse. Bruising of the penis is a potential side effect, and the band will restrict ejaculation. Your penis might feel cold to the touch.
If a penis pump is a good choice for you, your doctor may recommend or prescribe a model that is best for you.
Penile implants. This treatment comprises surgically placing devices into both sides of the penis. These implants consist of either semi right rods or inflatable rods. Inflatable devices allow you to control you have long you have an erection. These semi-rigid rods keep your penis firm yet bendable.
Penile implants are not supported until other methods have been tried first. Implants have a high degree of satisfaction among men who have tried and failed more-cognitive therapies. As with any surgery, there’s a hazard of complications, such as infection.
Blood vessel surgery. Rarely, erectile dysfunction is handled by bypassing obstructed penile parties. This is uncommon however and is only suggested in a small percentage of men.