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Erectile dysfunction

couple-1432912The word ‘Erect’ not just means straight but rigid and stiff too. All problem or difficulties for a man to get or retain an erection of the penis long enough for a sexual intercourse consistently is termed as Erectile Dysfunction.  The condition is witnesses occasionally by men and at times they lose one prematurely during sexual activity, it might not be a cause of concern. However a regular occurrence demands a trained sexologist’s attention. This is a common condition as men age. Though one cannot conclusively say; nearly 50% of men from age 40 – 70 years experience this difficulty. The cause of this disorder is varied and includes many general health conditions, lifestyle disorders and most time medications too

Medical Causes

It’s easier to understand, what is wrong, when you know, how it functions!! An erection takes place when the penis fills with blood and a valve at the base of the penis traps it. Thus any condition that, constraints blood flow or hardens the arteries like in atherosclerosis, which is the hardening of arteries,  diabetes, high blood pressure, cholesterol levels are prime cause of Erectile Dysfunction.

Other medical conditions that affect and contribute to erectile dysfunction are cancer or surgeries which affect nerves/arteries that are important for erection; all injuries pelvic or spinal cord that can hamper proper nerve functioning.  The other important medical cause include Pyronie’s disease causes plaques and fibers to appear in the genitals, interrupting blood flow and low testosterone level that can result in nervous disorders and thyroids in men.

Lifestyle Causes

Erectile Dysfunction is a direct result of man’s state of health both body and mind. The lifestyle habits dictate most of it. For Eg. Depression is both a body and mind condition and a common cause of Erectile Dysfunction. Similarly Chronic Smoking and Severe alcoholism leads to constriction of blood vessels decreasing blood flow to the penis. Poor dietary habits and obesity  are often related to Erectile Dysfunction

Psychological conditions also inflict erectile dysfunction

Undue stress in sexual activities, excessive worrying about performing right for your partner triggers nervous reactions that could prevent erection amongst many men. There have been instances of relationship issues affecting a man’s ability to have erection. However he might have normal functioning outside of the troubled relationship. The psychological aversion to sex as a pleasure activity in some, strict religious upbringing that demoralizes sex or abnormal sex preference be it homo sexual or bi sexual could all be a contributing factor for Erectile Dysfunction.

Medicines that affect

Research has also revealed certain medicine or drug interactions in a human body result in Erectile Dysfunction. Thiazide diuretics that are prescribed to control high blood pressure, antidepressants, Sedatives, estrogens, Narcotics like cocaine, alcohol and narcotic pain relievers, anti anxiety medications and anticancer medications belong in this category.

Symptoms and Complications Of erectile dysfunction.

No man’s composition is alike and thus the high degree of variability induces many complications to a set body of symptoms and hence needs professional diagnosis to understand and comprehend individually. However here is a compilation of general symptoms as guidelines for comprehension. (While erectile dysfunction is sure to raise some anxiety, it’s highly important for patients to keep their relationship with their sexual partner as regular as possible.  The problem is curable and one needs to approach it with the right mindset and cooperate with his sexologist to find the right cause and perfect solution.)

No erection during sex. A man may at times have erection like in the morning when he wakes up but unable to get at sexual intercourse – (This is often a sign of a psychological problem that may or may not have to do with that particular relationship.)

Sudden loss of erection – A man with normal functioning suddenly witnesses a loss in erection (This indicates  it’s a nerve or hormonal problem, a circulatory problem, or the effect of alcohol, drugs, or medicine.)

Soft erection – A man still gets erection but not hard or long enough like before( Mostly Circulatory Problem)

Problem Post Surgery/Injury  – Surgery/Injury itself could be the cause ( The doctor treating it should be consulted for all possible solutions )


Erectile Dysfunction is not a standalone disorder. Symptoms and complications indicate a need for  a comprehensive diagnosis that would aid wholesome solutions. a standalone approach might have a temporary relief but a cure needs to have a 360 degree view.

Most begin with a medical history check and present medicines consumed.

Standard questionnaires and probe into erectile function and results – mostly satisfaction levels along with blood pressure and hormone level test is pre functionary. NPT(nocturnal penile tumescence)  and Doplar Radar are more specialized test  to monitor erection at night and track blood flow to penis which are commonly  aid in diagnosis

Treating and Preventing Erectile Dysfunction

This complex disorder has a variety of treatments. Some timeless alternative solutions and others evolved with modern technology both as surgery and medicine with a cure assurance of 90% of the problem. The wide ranging cure list also includes pills, injections and devices to augment pleasure and enhance erection time too. The cause of the problem and the severity of it usually determines the mode of medications adopted. It would be comfortable to involve sex partner preference too


This class of medications includes sildenafil,* tadalafil, and vardenafil. They work to relax the smooth muscles of Penis, allowing more blood to enter thus aiding erection. These are pre sex medications that work when one is sexually stimulated. These need medical supervision in terms of time induced and dosages consumped and also prone to side effects. One needs to let his doctor know so as to monitor drug interactions (whatever current medication you are using for other general conditions). They  add high risk factor in condition of heart attacks, high diabetes, high blood pressure/hyper tension or other heart conditions  and nitrate medications


Alprostadil is a pre sex medication that can be self injected. It is injected into the penis or also inserted as a pellet through the urethra. It helps erection that usually lasts  for an hour.  However a higher dose could lead to a condition called priapism, i.e an erection that won’t go away. This  may result in serious bruising, bleeding, and pain.

Some prescriptions include additional ingredients like Phentolamine  with Alprostadil to help work more effectively. Its combined at pharmacies based on the prescriptions. This  is also injected into penis and after effects include Bruising bleeding and pain

Testosterone therepy:

This is a highly specific medication prescribed for a condition called Hypogonadism( small testicles at birth) that lowers testosterone levels in blood. It helps erections and also increases interest in sex.

Non-medication treatments

  • Vacuum devices:

A purpose designed external pump that involves placing a tube over the penis, forming an airtight seal around the base. By pumping air out of the tube, blood can be drawn into the penis. Placing a ring around the base of the penis will maintain the erection.

Penile implants:

Usually the last resort, this treatment involves permanent implantation of flexible rods or similar devices into the penis. The latest device consists of inflatable rods activated by a tiny pump and switch in the scrotum. Squeezing the scrotum stiffens the penis, whether the person is aroused or not. The penis itself remains flaccid, however, so the diameter and length are usually less than a natural erection, and hardness is lacking, although it’s sufficient for intercourse. All these mechanical methods are based on simple principles of hydraulics and mechanics and are quite reliable, but have their disadvantages. Simple versions have the disadvantage of giving the user a permanent erection and latest inventions are expensive and thus accessible to only a few

Alternate Medication

Although FDA has reservations on herbal Viagra and other such alternate medicines available; India has a rich repository of herbal medicines under various streams that are proven, prevalent and highly regarded for its no side effects and successful cure. The Alternative system and especially the herbal medicines are a natural therapy with holistic approach that provide wholesome solutions for complete cure in this regard. Reach us today for a personal consultation.

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