Erectile Dysfunction from a Medical Perspective

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What causes Erectile Dysfunction in men? The first of a three part series.

Today is the first of a three part series that Brett and I are doing on the topic of ED in men. Erectile Dysfunction is very common. Most men at some point in their lives experience problems with getting or maintaining a satisfactory erection. Generally it is thought that if this is happening at least 25% of the time, then you have a problem and need to seek treatment.

Brett and I talk about what causes Ed, and the physical symptoms and manifestations of various problems that lead to the inability to have or maintain an erection strong enough for a fulfilling sexual encounter. Erections are made possible by blood flow to the penis. When there is restriction of blood flow in the pelvic girdle, it becomes difficult to impossible for men to get erections. This restriction can be caused by many things. The most immediate causes are inflammation and cholesterol. The problem does not really start there, it starts for most men when they begin to loose their testosterone. If they replace their lost testosterone with a bio identical replacement (shots or pellets) then it will help by not only improving the blood flow to the penis, but also by increasing the oxytocin. This helps with arousal and emotional focusing on sexual matters as well as by helping the mechanics of the erection work better.

If the problem is not solved with testosterone then we have to look more at other interventions. The next issue we consider is plaque build up in the vessels of the pelvic area, and that comes from high blood pressure and cholesterol. When there is plaque in the vessels the blood cannot flow properly and there will not be enough volume to maintain an erection.

Brett and I talk about things that men do that lead to these problems. The first of course, is that by aging they lose their testosterone. But beyond that, they smoke, gain weight, eat poorly (beef, saturated fats, animal fats, etc.) and they don’t exercise. All of these are contributors to the problem of ED.

One of the interesting things that we hit on is that men often are told that they will have heart attacks and die sooner if they live this way, and they laugh it off. If they are told that they will loose their erectile function and not have sex, they get serious and promise to do anything to be better!

Finally, we discuss the mechanics of erectile functioning and how procedures like a fem-pop surgery might help, or medicines like beta blockers such as Benicar rather than linisopril, or the use of drugs such as Viagra. We even discuss the issue of dehydration and its impact on erections and sex. Diabetes, which is becoming an epidemic among the aging population of the United States is also a major contributor to ED problems in men.

If you are a male, and you are having concerns about ED, you will find this podcast of interest and importance. Please listen to it, and come back for the next two weeks as we discuss more about how to treat or deal with ED problems.

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