Erectile Dysfunction: What a Guy Needs to Know

February 2019

Erectile dysfunction (ED) is a consistent inability to have an erection firm enough for sexual intercourse. The condition includes the total inability to have an erection and the inability to sustain an erection.

Estimates of the prevalence of ED in men with diabetes vary widely, ranging from 20 to 75 percent. Men who have diabetes are two to three times more likely to have ED than men who do not have diabetes. Among men with ED, those with diabetes may experience the problem as much as 10 to 15 years earlier than men without diabetes. Tight control over your diabetes may help prevent ED. Research suggests that ED may be an early marker of diabetes, particularly in men ages 45 and younger.

If you are experiencing ED, schedule an appointment with your doctor. Treatments for ED caused by nerve damage, also called neuropathy, vary widely and can range from oral pills, a vacuum pump, pellets placed in the urethra, and shots directly into the penis, to surgery. Psychological counseling to relieve anxiety is sometimes recommended as well.

Source: National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Disease

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