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Erectile Dysfunction is a Strong Predictor of Premature Death

New research, published in the Journal of Sexual Medicine (published by the International Society for Sexual Medicine), indicates that men who suffer from erectile dysfunction may be 70% more likely to die prematurely.

The researchers, at the University of Mississippi, USA, revealed that cardiovascular disease, a disease of the heart or blood vessels, is one of the most common causes of impotence.
Erectile Dysfunction (ED), also known as impotence, is a condition where the penis does not harden and expand when a man is sexually excited, or when he cannot keep an erection long enough to effectively engage in sexual activity.

ED is one of the most common male sexual dysfunctions and affects around 18 million men in the US. The recent University of Mississippi study showed that ED increased the risk of premature death, if left untreated.

Therefore it is important for men with erectile dysfunction to be screened and potentially treated for complications that may enhance the possibility of premature death.

It is often thought that ED is a disorder that mainly affects older men, but the researchers reported that nearly 20% of men under 40 suffer from the condition.

ED is known to be related to cardiovascular disease risk factors, such as high blood pressure (hypertension), hyperlipidaemia, smoking, obesity and diabetes.
For the University of Mississippi study, the scientists collected data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey in which 1,790 men, between the ages of 20 to 85, took part in 2003-2004. They then linked the survey data with death certificates from the US National Death Index through 21st December 2011.

To determine who suffered from erectile dysfunction, those who took part in the survey were asked the question 'How would you describe your ability to get and keep an erection adequate for satisfactory intercourse?'

The 557 men who answered "never able" or "sometimes able" were considered to have the condition.

Eight years after taking part in the survey, 244 men of the original group had died: 64 died from malignant neoplasms, 61 from cardiovascular disease, 12 from chronic lower respiratory diseases, and the remainder from a number of other causes.

The results were adjusted to take into account physical activity, age, race-ethnicity, poverty-to-income ratio, waist circumference, cotinine and comorbid illness.

While they concluded that the participants who suffered from ED had a 70% greater risk of premature overall mortality, they also said that "This finding should, however, be interpreted with caution".

This is because the research results showed that out of the 1,790 men, only 61 of them between 20 to 49 years had erectile dysfunction, and only 4 of them died during the 8 year follow-up period.

Therefore, they said that further research is needed to see the long-term results over a longer follow-up period.

So, if you, or someone you love, thinks they might suffer from ED, it would be advisable for you/them to see their GP/doctor and get a full battery of tests to determine the cause.

And if you/they have already been diagnosed with ED, then perhaps prescription medication (such as Cialis, Levitra, or Viagra) would be an appropriate treatment.

For more information about ED or prescription medication to treat it, or for a free private online consultation (with a UK GMC-registered doctor) about treatment for the condition, please CLICK HERE.

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