Don’t Ignore Erectile Dysfuntion: It’s Treatable!
If you are a man with diabetes, we’ve got good news and bad news about your sex life. The bad news: Men with diabetes are three times more likely to report having problems with sex than non-diabetic men. The most common sexual problem is Erectile Dysfunction, or ED, sometimes called impotence. Even worse, because ED is such a private issue, many men feel embarrassed to discuss the problem with their doctor, or even their partner, so the problem is never addressed. The good news: ED is one of the most treatable complications of diabetes. In fact, over 95 percent of cases can be successfully treated. With proven treatments available, diabetic men with ED have options. It isn’t something you—or your partner—should have to live with. What ED Is—and What It Isn’t ED means the repeated inability to achieve or sustain an erection sufficient for sexual intercourse. Although sexual vigor generally declines with age, a man who is healthy, physically and emotionally, should be able to produce erections, and enjoy sexual intercourse, regardless of his age. ED is not an inevitable part of the aging process. ED does not mean: • An occasional failure to achieve an erection. The adage is true: It really does happen to everyone. All men experience occasional difficulties with erection, usually related to fatigue, illness, alcohol or drug use, or stress. It isn’t fun, but it is totally normal. • Diminished interest in sex. ED occurs when a man is interested in sex, but still cannot achieve or maintain an erection. Many men with diabetes also experience a decreased sex drive, often as a result of hormone imbalances or depression. Decreased sex drive is quite treatable, but it is treated differently from ED. • Problems with ejaculation. Such problems often indicate a st Continue reading >>
Erectile Dysfunction And Diabetes: Take Control Today
Erectile dysfunction is a common problem for men who have diabetes — but it's not inevitable. Consider prevention strategies, treatment options and more. Erectile dysfunction — the inability to get or maintain an erection firm enough for sex — is common in men who have diabetes. It can stem from problems caused by poor long-term blood sugar control, which damages nerves and blood vessels. Erectile dysfunction can also be linked to other conditions common in men with diabetes, such as high blood pressure and coronary artery disease. Having erectile dysfunction can be a real challenge. It can leave you and your partner feeling frustrated and discouraged. Take steps to cope with erectile dysfunction — and get your sex life back on track. Talk to an expert Many men are reluctant to discuss erectile dysfunction with their doctors. But don't let embarrassment keep you from getting help. One small conversation can make a big difference. Here's what to do: Tell your doctor what's going on. Your doctor will consider underlying causes of your erectile dysfunction and can give you information about medication and other erectile dysfunction treatments. Find out your options. Ask what you need to do to control diabetes. Careful blood sugar control can prevent nerve and blood vessel damage that can lead to erectile dysfunction. Ask your doctor if you're taking the right steps to manage your diabetes. Ask about other health problems. It's common for men with diabetes to have other chronic conditions that can cause or worsen erectile dysfunction. Work with your doctor to make sure you're addressing any other health problems. Check your medications. Ask your doctor if you're taking any medications that might be worsening your erectile problems, such as drugs used to treat depres Continue reading >>
Diabetes - Erectile Dysfunction
How often do men with diabetes experience ED? Erectile dysfunction is a common issue in diabetic men -- in fact, research indicates that men with diabetes are four times more likely to experience erectile dysfunction as men without diabetes. Erectile dysfunction occurs 10-to-15 years earlier in men with diabetes than in men without diabetes and diabetic men with ED may also suffer more severe ED than men without diabetes. The severity of their ED also increases with age, length of time and poor diabetes control. ED may also worsen with the presence of cardiovascular complications and therapy. Understand that, with proper treatment of diabetes, the chances of diabetic men being affected by ED are reduced, but not eliminated. Why does diabetes cause ED? Diabetes has to do with the body's metabolism. Most of the food we eat is broken down into glucose, a type of sugar in the blood. After digestion, glucose moves into the blood stream to help cell growth and energy. A hormone, called insulin, changes glucose into the energy the body needs for daily life. In people with diabetes, though, the body produces either too little or no insulin. People with diabetes may experience frequent changes of high and low blood sugar levels. Very high levels of blood sugar associated with diabetes can affect the penis in a variety of ways, and lead to ED. The effects include blood vessel damage, nerve damage and damage to erection tissue itself. This nerve and blood vessel damage can disrupt normal sexual function. Diabetes can cause neuropathy, or damage to nerves, throughout the body, including the penis. These damaged nerves cannot communicate properly, meaning that the proper information is not being relayed from the brain to the penis making it difficult to have an erection firm enough Continue reading >>
Diabetes, Men, And Sex
Sexual dysfunction. You've seen the ads on television, you've heard the jokes, and, if you're like most men, you've tried your best to block it from your mind. But if you have diabetes, this is one touchy subject you shouldn't ignore. A full 75 percent of diabetic men have some trouble achieving or maintaining an erection long enough to have intercourse. But diabetes doesn't have to be a deathblow to your sex life. You can protect your sexual functioning by keeping your diabetes under control. And if the condition has already started to derail your physical relationships, your doctor can help you get back on track. How does diabetes cause sexual dysfunction? Erections take teamwork from several parts of the body: Your brain makes you aroused, your nerves sense pleasurable feelings, and your arteries carry a flood of blood to the penis. Unfortunately, poorly controlled diabetes can ruin that teamwork. Blood sugar that stays too high for too long can both deaden your nerves and damage the arteries that feed your penis. You can still get aroused, but you'll have trouble turning those feelings into action. The breakdown doesn't happen overnight. Most men have diabetes for many years before they notice a problem with erections. Diabetic men rarely have any erectile dysfunction before they reach 30. The key is controlling your diabetes. But when it comes to blood sugar, how high is too high? There's a national movement to describe sugar levels in terms of A1C (also known as glycosylated hemoglobin or HbA1c)), a lab test that reports average blood glucose over a period of two to three months. If your A1C is below 7 percent, your blood sugar is under control. But as A1C gets higher than 7 percent your long-term risk of damage to nerves and arteries increases, and that can also Continue reading >>
Diabetes And Erectile Dysfunction
Tweet Erectile dysfunction (ED) is a common problem amongst men who have diabetes affecting 35-75% of male diabetics. Up to 75% of men suffering from diabetes will experience some degree of erectile dysfunction (erection problems) over the course of their lifetime. Men who have diabetes are thought to develop erectile dysfunction between 10 and 15 years earlier than men who do not suffer from the disease. Over the age of 70, there is a 95% likelihood of facing difficulties with erectile function. What causes erectile dysfunction amongst diabetics? Causes of ED are extremely complex, and are based around changes that occur to the body over time affecting nerve, muscle and blood vessel functions. In order to obtain an erection, men need to have healthy blood vessels, nerves, male hormones and a desire to have sex. Without blood vessels and nerves that control erection, ED can still occur despite a desire to have sex and normal male hormones. Factors amongst men Many other factors bear on erectile dysfunction amongst diabetic men. These include: Being overweight Smoking Taking too little exercise and other lifestyle factors. Surgery can damage nerves and arteries linked to the penis, as can some injuries. Many common medications (including antidepressants and blood pressure drugs) can produce ED. Psychological factors also have an enormous influence. Anxiety, guilt, depression, low self-esteem and paranoia about sexual failure are estimated to cause between 10% and 20% of ED cases. How is ED diagnosed? Erectile dysfunction is diagnosed using several different methods. Patient history often informs the degree and nature of the ED. Medical and sexual past often has an influence, as does prescription or illegal drug use. ED patients may be physically examined, and bodily feat Continue reading >>
Type 2 Diabetes And Erectile Dysfunction (ed): Is There A Connection?
Although diabetes and erectile dysfunction (ED) are two separate conditions, they tend to go hand-in-hand. ED is defined as having difficulty achieving or maintaining an erection. Men who have diabetes are two to three times more likely to develop ED. When men ages 45 and under develop ED, it may be a sign of type 2 diabetes. Diabetes occurs when you have too much sugar circulating in your bloodstream. There are two main types of diabetes: type 1 diabetes, which affects less than 10 percent of those who have diabetes, and type 2 diabetes, which accounts for over 90 percent of diabetes cases. Type 2 diabetes often develops as a result of being overweight or inactive. Approximately 30 million Americans have diabetes, and about half of them are men. An estimated 10 percent of men ages 40 to 70 have severe ED, and another 25 percent have moderate ED. ED tends to become more common as men age, though it isn’t an inevitable part of aging. For many men, other health conditions, such as diabetes, contribute to the likelihood of developing ED. The Boston University Medical Center reports that about half of men who are diagnosed with type 2 diabetes will develop ED within five to 10 years of their diagnosis. If those men also have heart disease, their odds of becoming impotent are even greater. However, the results of a 2014 study suggest that if you have diabetes but adopt a healthier lifestyle, you may reduce your diabetes symptoms and improve your sexual health. These lifestyle habits include eating a balanced diet and getting regular exercise. The connection between diabetes and ED is related to your circulation and nervous system. Poorly controlled blood sugar levels can damage small blood vessels and nerves. Damage to the nerves that control sexual stimulation and respons Continue reading >>
Sexual Dysfunction - Causes And Symptoms
Out-of-control blood sugar levels can lead to blood vessel and nerve damage that hamper sexual performance and enjoyment. This can cause diabetes-related sexual dysfunction in men as well as in women. Men and women with diabetes also should be aware of sexual function issues that affect both sexes. Other factors can cause or exacerbate sexual dysfunction, including psychological issues, self-consciousness and fear of failure. If you are experiencing impotence or sexual dysfunction, it's important to see your doctor for an accurate diagnosis of your condition. Diabetes can cause nerve and artery damage in the genital area, disrupting the blood flow necessary for an erection. This is more common in older men who have had diabetes for a long time. High cholesterol, high blood pressure and obesity - all common among men with diabetes - as well as smoking, can contribute to the problem. Some men with diabetes experience retrograde ejaculation, which means that the ejaculate goes backward into the bladder instead of being discharged during climax. This condition does not affect orgasm, but it can make it difficult to father a child. Diabetes-related nerve damage can cause vaginal dryness that makes intercourse uncomfortable. Nerve damage also can lead to loss of sensation in the genital area, making orgasm difficult or impossible to achieve. Urinary infections are more common in people with poorly controlled diabetes and can cause discomfort for women during intercourse and for men during urination and ejaculation. These generally are temporary complications, but they can recur. Sexual activity should be stopped during treatment of urinary tract and yeast infections, which also are relatively common in people with diabetes. Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) can be transmit Continue reading >>
Erectile Dysfunction And Diabetes
It is estimated that about 35% to 75% of men with diabetes will experience at least some degree of erectile dysfunction -- also called ED or impotence -- during their lifetime. Men with diabetes tend to develop erectile dysfunction 10 to 15 years earlier than men without diabetes. As men with diabetes age, erectile dysfunction becomes even more common. Above the age of 50, the likelihood of having difficulty with an erection occurs in approximately 50% to 60% of men with diabetes. Above age 70, there is about a 95% likelihood of having some difficulty with erectile dysfunction. The causes of erectile dysfunction in men with diabetes are complex and involve impairments in nerve, blood vessel, and muscle function. To get an erection, men need healthy blood vessels, nerves, male hormones, and a desire to be sexually stimulated. Diabetes can damage the blood vessels and nerves that control erection. Therefore, even if you have normal amounts of male hormones and you have the desire to have sex, you still may not be able to achieve a firm erection. Men with diabetes having trouble with achieving and/or maintaining an erection can take oral medications like sildenafil (Revatio, Viagra), tadalafil (Adcirca,Cialis), avanafil (Stendra), or vardenafil (Levitra, Staxyn). However, because people with diabetes also tend to have problems with their heart, these medications may not be appropriate and could cause dangerous interactions with some heart medicines. Talk to your doctor to determine what treatment is best. Additional treatments men with diabetes might want to consider include intracavernous injection therapy, vacuum erection (not constriction) devices, venous constriction devices (for venous leak syndrome), intraurethral therapy, penile prostheses (inflatable and malleable) Continue reading >>
Diabetes And Erectile Dysfunction
Men with diabetes are at a higher risk of erectile dysfunction, or impotence, especially if their diabetes is not well controlled. There are many effective treatments available. Discuss the problem with your doctor as soon as you notice a change. On this page: Men with diabetes are at a higher risk of erectile dysfunction or impotence, especially if their diabetes is not well controlled. Erectile dysfunction means you cannot have an erection that is sufficient to perform sexual intercourse. Many men experience short-term episodes of erectile dysfunction but, for about one in 10 men, the problem may continue. See your doctor if you notice any failure to achieve an erection. Causes of erectile dysfunction Erectile dysfunction can be caused by physical and psychological factors including: stress, anxiety and nervousness problems in relationships poor health drinking too much alcohol cigarette smoking some medications some operations low levels of the male hormone testosterone. Physical erectile dysfunction happens over a period of months or years and is often a gradual loss of function. If erections still occur spontaneously overnight or in the morning, this indicates that the problem may be psychological. The link between diabetes and erectile dysfunction The reasons why men with diabetes are more prone to problems with erectile dysfunction are not fully understood. However, we do know that men with diabetes are more likely to develop erectile problems when their diabetes is not well controlled. Over the long term, poor control may result in increased damage to the nerves and circulation that controls blood flow to the penis. If blood glucose levels are kept in the normal range, it will help reduce the chance of these problems occurring. Diagnosis of erectile dysfunction Continue reading >>
Erectile Dysfunction Signals Diabetes| Men's Health
If youve got erectile dysfunction (ED), your most pressing concern is your penis, and how to get it back in fighting shape. But you also need to take a closer look at what causes your EDand what it might mean for your overall health. In a study at the University of Toronto, guys with ED were twice as likely to have undiagnosed diabetes as those with normal erections. And the effect was even stronger in middle-aged men: Nearly 20 percent of guys in their 40s and 50s with ED had the condition without knowing it. Whats up with the link? Untreated diabetes can damage your blood vessels and nerves, which are needed for normal erectile function, says study author Sean Skeldon, M.D. Related: Having Penis Problems? Heres Your Complete Guide to Staying Hard for Life You probably think youd know if you had diabetes or not. But the problem is most cases of the condition dont have any obvious symptoms. And if they do, theyre very generallike feeling tired or peeing often, which everyone has experienced. For some men, ED may be the first sign, Dr. Skeldon says. So theres your cue: If youre unable to achieve or maintain an erection, make an appointment with your primary care physician. If your doctor suspects diabetes, he or she will probably order a fasting blood glucose test to check your blood sugar levels. Your doctor may be more likely to do the test if you have certain risk factors for diabetes: high blood pressure, high cholesterol, obesity, or a family history of the condition. Related: 5 Surprising Habits That May Raise Your Risk of Diabetes A fasting glucose blood sugar level of 126 milligrams per decileter (mg/dL) means diabetes, says Dr. Skeldon. Anything between 100 and 125 mg/dL puts you in the prediabetes range, which increases your risk of developing diabetes and dam Continue reading >>
Diabetes, Erectile Dysfunction, And Sleep-related Erections.
Diabetes, erectile dysfunction, and sleep-related erections. Department of Psychiatry, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, Texas. Sleep-related erections were assessed in conjunction with polysomnography in 100 diabetic and 400 nondiabetic men with complaints of erectile problems. We also measured bulbocavernosus reflex latency, heart rate response to deep breathing, postural-related blood pressure changes, penile arterial sufficiency, and brachial blood pressures. To investigate the relationship between diabetes and erectile capacity, the results obtained from men with and without diabetes were compared. Men with diabetes had fewer sleep-related erections, less tumescence time, diminished penile circumference increase, and lower penile rigidity than nondiabetic men. These diabetes-related differences were found regardless of the maximum penile rigidity observed. The diabetic group had less heart rate response to deep breathing and lower penile blood pressures than the nondiabetic group, but only among men with maximum penile rigidity less than 500 g. These data indicate that both neurological and vascular mechanisms are involved to a greater degree in organic diabetic impotence than in the organic erectile dysfunction that occurs in nondiabetic men. Finally, the pattern of lower values for measures of nocturnal tumescence among diabetic men, compared to nondiabetic men, occurred in all age groups, except the oldest. Among impotent men, age 65 years or older, no difference was found between men with and without diabetes. This suggests that diabetes may foreshadow some of the age-related pathophysiological processes associated with erectile dysfunction. Continue reading >>
Diabetes And Erectile Dysfunction: What Is The Connection?
Erectile dysfunction, also called impotence, is not being able to get and maintain an erection for long enough to have sexual intercourse. There are many causes of erectile dysfunction (ED) which can be physical, psychological, or both. One of the most common causes of ED is diabetes. Studies suggest that 35-75 percent of men with diabetes will go on to develop ED. They will also tend to develop ED some 10-15 years earlier than men without diabetes. Why can diabetes cause erectile dysfunction? Diabetes can cause ED because it can damage the blood supply to the penis and the nerves that control an erection. When a man becomes sexually aroused, a chemical called nitric oxide is released into his bloodstream. This nitric oxide tells the arteries and the muscles in the penis to relax, which allows more blood to flow into the penis. This gives the man an erection. Men with diabetes struggle with blood sugar level swings, especially if their condition isn't managed poorly. When their blood sugar levels get too high, less nitric oxide is produced. This can mean that there is not enough blood flowing into the penis to get or keep an erection. Low levels of nitric oxide are often found in those with diabetes. Other causes of erectile dysfunction Listed below are some other reasons for ED: nervous system problems including damage to spinal cord or brain smoking, drinking too much alcohol, and using some illegal drugs some medications such as those taken for high blood pressure and depression Pelvic injury or surgery on the prostate, bowel or bladder may cause damage to nerves connected to the penis. This nerve damage can also lead to ED. Tests and diagnosis A doctor will often perform some of the following tests to diagnose ED: Blood tests to check for a raised blood sugar level, Continue reading >>
When Viagra Doesn’t Work
Treating Erectile Dysfunction Erectile dysfunction is a common occurrence in men with diabetes. The incidence of erectile dysfunction increases progressively with age, from 5% in men age 20 to 75% in men over age 65. The cause of erectile dysfunction in men with diabetes is usually related to a decrease in the blood supply to the penis as well as to injury to the nerves that are responsible for the erection mechanism. A decrease in testosterone production has also been identified as the cause in some men with diabetes. Since 1998, when sildenafil (brand name Viagra) first came on the market, oral therapy has been successfully used to treat erectile dysfunction in many men with diabetes. (Sildenafil was followed in 2003 by the drugs tadalafil [Cialis], vardenafil [Levitra] and avanafil [Stendra], which work in much the same way.) Some 50% of men with Type 1 diabetes who try the drugs report improved erections, and some 60% men with Type 2 diabetes do, too. However, that leaves a large percentage of men with diabetes and erectile dysfunction who do not respond to therapy with one of these pills. This article takes a look at what can be done to treat those men who do not respond to oral therapy. Why therapy fails There are a number of reasons a man may not achieve the desired result from an oral erectile dysfunction drug. In some cases, a man may experience drug side effects severe enough to outweigh any potential benefit of taking the drug. Possible side effects of these drugs include headache, facial flushing, nasal congestion, and transient abnormal vision. (In October 2007, the FDA added a warning about sudden hearing loss to the package labels of oral erectile dysfunction drugs. While it’s not absolutely clear that the drugs can cause sudden hearing loss, a number o Continue reading >>
Resolving Erectile Dysfunction
Dear David and Aisha, I am a 39-year-old married man who has had type 1 diabetes for 22 years. My A1C levels run around 7.5%. About six years ago, I started having trouble with erections. Now they are very rare, even with ED pills. I know you say that there is more to sex than intercourse, and my wife and I still enjoy ourselves however we can. But we both miss the erections. I have heard lately that erectile dysfunction can sometimes be improved. How can that happen? I don’t want any surgeries. What do you know about recovering erections? Happily Married but Frustrated Dear Happily Married, You picked a good time to write. Recent research has pointed to at least three ways that erectile dysfunction (ED) can be not only treated, but often resolved. Normalizing blood sugars can help; so can losing weight. There are also programs of “penis rehabilitation” that will improve erections. Glucose Levels First, what causes erectile dysfunction in diabetes? There are many causes, but the main one is nerve and blood vessel damage caused by high blood sugar. Elevated sugar levels contribute to inflammation, which can damage or kill nerves and narrow or block blood vessels, causing them to leak. Either factor can block erections. Fortunately, we now know that lowering blood sugar allows nerves, and sometimes blood vessels, to heal and regenerate. Just as neuropathic pain in the feet often resolves as blood sugars improve, nerve function to the genitals can too. Studies in the US, Egypt, and Italy consistently show that A1C levels are the strongest predictor of erection problems. The higher a person’s A1C, the more sexual problems he is likely to have. Your level of 7.5% is a bit high. If you could get closer to 6.5%, your sex life might improve significantly. Talk with your Continue reading >>
Diabetes And Erectile Dysfunction
Until recently, erectile dysfunction (ED) was one of the most neglected complications of diabetes. In the past, physicians and patients were led to believe that declining sexual function was an inevitable consequence of advancing age or was brought on by emotional problems. This misconception, combined with men’s natural reluctance to discuss their sexual problems and physicians’ inexperience and unease with sexual issues, resulted in failure to directly address this problem with the majority of patients experiencing it. Luckily, awareness of ED as a significant and common complication of diabetes has increased in recent years, mainly because of increasing knowledge of male sexual function and the rapidly expanding armamentarium of novel treatments being developed for impotence. Studies of ED suggest that its prevalence in men with diabetes ranges from 35–75% versus 26% in general population. The onset of ED also occurs 10–15 years earlier in men with diabetes than it does in sex-matched counterparts without diabetes. A sexually competent male must have a series of events occur and multiple mechanisms intact for normal erectile function. He must 1) have desire for his sexual partner (libido), 2) be able to divert blood from the iliac artery into the corpora cavernosae to achieve penile tumescence and rigidity (erection) adequate for penetration, 3) discharge sperm and prostatic/seminal fluid through his urethra (ejaculation), and 4) experience a sense of pleasure (orgasm). A man is considered to have ED if he cannot achieve or sustain an erection of sufficient rigidity for sexual intercourse. Most men, at one time or another during their life, experience periodic or isolated sexual failures. However, the term “impotent” is reserved for those men who experien Continue reading >>