Erectile dysfunction, or ED, is quite common. Experts disagree on the exact prevalence of ED, but it’s likely somewhere between 30% and perhaps as much as 75%. The good news is that there are very effective treatments available, and if you discuss it with your doctor, you’re likely to get help.
Dr. Paul Chung is an expert in treating health problems that men tend to experience and he understands the hesitancy many men have when it comes to seeking treatment for ED. However, erectile dysfunction can be a symptom of a serious health condition, so discussing it with your doctor is important.
In this post, we discuss some of the health conditions that are associated with ED, as well as what you should do if you experience erectile dysfunction regularly.
When you have heart disease, your blood vessels become narrow and inflexible, making it difficult for blood to flow through. When you have an erection, blood flow to your penis increases and fills a spongy tissue called the corpora cavernosa, causing an erection. If the blood vessels are narrowed and inflexible, the blood may not flow correctly meaning you cannot get or keep an erection.
In other words, ED can be an early warning sign of heart disease, or of a condition that contributes to heart disease, such as hypertension or plaque buildup in your arteries. If you have ED, it’s important to be screened for heart problems, even if you don’t have any other symptoms.
Happily, getting treatment for either condition can help improve the other. If you have known heart disease, treatment can improve ED, and if you have ED due to heart problems, finding out could save your life.
Type 2 diabetes
Men who have type 2 diabetes are two to three times more likely to develop ED than those who don’t have it. Diabetes may not have other symptoms, so ED could be an important indicator.
Type 2 diabetes involves the accumulation of sugar in your blood vessels, which damages both the blood vessels and your nerves. Nerve damage can lead to ED, and damage to the blood vessels can impede blood flow, which may also contribute to being unable to get or keep an erection.
A healthy diet, maintaining a healthy weight, being physically active, and taking medication to control your blood sugar may all be important in treating type 2 diabetes. Additionally, treatments for ED can help, even if you already have blood vessel and nerve damage.
Chronic kidney disease
If your kidneys aren’t working properly, you may have a build up of toxic waste in your bloodstream, which can lead to ED. Additionally, medications used to treat chronic kidney disease can cause ED. Treatments for ED can be effective, even if you have chronic kidney disease.
If you feel uncomfortable when you think about discussing erectile dysfunction with your doctor, schedule an appointment with Dr. Chung. This is his area of specialty, so there’s no reason to feel embarrassed.
Although most men experience erectile dysfunction now and then due to things like stress, fatigue, or drinking too much, if the problem happens consistently, you should talk to a doctor. ED can indicate serious, sometimes life-threatening health conditions, so getting treatment is crucial. Schedule your appointment with Dr. Chung at either the Philadelphia, Pennsylvania or Cherry Hill, New Jersey location.