Erectile Dysfunction

Erectile Dysfunction: Causes and Treatment

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Erectile Dysfunction (ED) is the medical condition in which a man cannot obtain an erection or he cannot maintain an erection for the duration of a sexual encounter. It was previously called impotence, but the current term is erectile dysfunction. It can happen to men of all ages. It is a problem that can greatly affect a man’s ego, family, work, energy level, and overall happiness. As men age, it may become necessary for more stimulation to obtain an erection or to maintain the erection, and he may need more time in between sexual encounters, but he should still be able to obtain and maintain an erection naturally, without treatment. If he is continually unable to obtain and/or maintain an erection, a doctor may classify it as ED.ED


There are many possible causes to erectile dysfunction. Some of the causes are mental or emotional and some are caused by physical problems. Some of the more common mental or emotional grounds of this condition are diabetes (high blood sugar) and hypertension (low blood pressure), if your blood sugar and blood pressure are not under control, it can lead to ED. Atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries), Injuries to the brain or spinal cord, hypogonadism, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease, radiation therapy, stroke, prostate or bladder surgery, or cystic fibrosis are other factors that can lead to erectile dysfunction.

Alcohol AbuseUse of alcohol and tobacco and other drugs as well as some prescription medications or fatigue can affect your ability to concentrate or affect the blood flow to the penis and therefore lead to inability to perform temporarily, but can also lead to erectile dysfunction.

Prostate surgery or radiation therapy can also lead to erectile dysfunction.

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DepressionSome mental or emotional factors could be stress, anxiety, or nervousness about sex, perhaps because of a previous negative sexual experience or because of stress from other places such as work or family situations or possibly a previous trauma. Depression is also a symptom of erectile dysfunction. If there are problems within the relationship, this could affect a man’s sexual performance.


Once a man has determined that he has ongoing difficulty obtaining and maintaining erections, he may wish to seek treatment. There are many different treatments available for this condition that is proven to be very effective. Depending on how serious it is, there are many different options. If the causes are mental or emotional, a man may choose to seek psychiatric counseling. With the therapist, he can seek counseling for different causes of stress, anxiety or depression. If the causes of stress are within the relationship, the couple may choose to get counseling together.[1]

He may also consider reducing stress naturally by making lifestyle changes such as losing weight, exercising more, quitting smoking, eating better, etc… [2]

If the man feels that he has exhausted other options, he may choose to try one of the many over-the-counter or herbal remedies for erectile dysfunction, although these have mixed reviews from the consumers.

And if he is still experiencing problems in the bedroom, he may speak to his doctor about prescription drug possibilities. The doctor will begin with asking questions about what the causes are of erectile dysfunction before determining which medications to prescribe. The doctor may also order some tests for blood and urine to see if there is an underlying cause. Depending on the determined factor of each individual’s erectile dysfunction, there are many different options for medical treatment and they are not always effective for everyone.


viagraPossibly the most well known drug for erectile dysfunction is Viagra. Viagra is a powerful medication used to treat erectile dysfunction in men. The active ingredient is Sildenafil Citrate, which is a phosphodiesterase inhibitor and is shown to improve blood flow to the penis, thereby allowing the man to obtain and maintain an erection during sexual activity. With this medication, the man should be able to maintain an erection and reach orgasm. Taking Viagra does not increase sexual desire and the medication will only work with sexual stimulation.

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cialisAnother common drug is Cialis. Cialis active ingredient is Tadalafil which is a phosphodiesterase type 5 inhibitor and helps the blood flow into the penis to obtain and maintain an erection. It is absorbed into the bloodstream and the medication causes the blood vessels to relax, allowing more blood to enter the penis during sexual stimulation, causing a firm erection.

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PriligyPriligy is another medicine, which contains the active ingredient Dapoxetine. Dapoxetine is in the Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitor family and it functions by increasing the activity of serotonin in the nervous system. It was initially created to treat depression but because it is absorbed and eliminated rapidly in the body, it is perfect for treatment of sexual performance problems because it can be taken when needed and it will be expelled from the body quickly. This option is great for causes of ED that are related to anxiety or depression or other emotional disturbances.

caverject (alprostadil)If the cause of ED is due to physical injury or surgery, or if oral medication has not worked, the doctor may prescribe a medication in the form of an injection. Some common injection medication brands are Alprostadil, Caverject, Caverject Impulse, Edex, Muse, and Prostin VR Pediatric. These injections work by widening blood vessels in the penis, improving blood flow and leading to firmer erections. They also increase the likelihood of ejaculation and pleasure during sexual activity. The main ingredient is identical to a naturally occurring substance found in the body.[3]

There are also many herbal remedies available but they have very mixed reviews and some believe that they may be effective because of a placebo effect more than because of a physiological change.


Erectile Dysfunction is an unfortunate condition for a couple to have. It causes a man to have difficulty or inability to obtain and/or maintain an erection and this could lead to problems in the relationship, in his work, in his personal life, and many other possibly places. There are many different causes of this condition such as medical conditions, interactions with other medications, or stress, anxiety or depression. Luckily, there are many options for treating this condition that have been proven to be very effective. Whether the answer is in therapy, improving the relationship with the man’s partner, or in medical intervention, there are many ways to treat erectile dysfunction and restore a man’s ability to have great sexual relations.

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