Knowing everything there is to know about erectile dysfunction or ED may require a fair amount of study. It’s a lot simpler if you read an article that’s presented clearly and accurately and detailed enough to provide sufficient information for the average person to read, digest and understand. That is the goal of this article and after reading it, you should be able to understand the causes, diagnosis and treatment for erectile dysfunction.
What actually causes erectile dysfunction (ED)?
Many factors can cause ED which includes:
- Emotional shock – a man may go through a serious trauma that can impede his ability to get an erection. Sometimes physical injury can also disable a man from getting an erection.
- Hardening of arteries – it sometimes happens that the supply of blood to the penis is blocked or narrowed due to vascular disease such as atherosclerosis which hardens the arteries making it difficult for blood to travel quickly and smoothly through the body and to the penis.
- Nerve disorders – the nerves in our bodies normally send impulses to the penis to behave in a certain way like producing an erection. Sometimes they fail to deliver their impulses or signals to to the penis because they’ve been damaged by illnesses such as diabetes, stress or some other causes and the penis doesn’t respond.
- Condition of the mind – also known as a psychological state is critical because the mind sends messages to the penis to act in a certain way especially for inducing an erection. The mind fails to send its messages because of depression, stressed, weak stimulus from the brain and anxiety about performance.
Can medications also cause erectile dysfunction?
The answer is affirmative and here are some common medications that may have ED as a possible side effect:
- Anti-seizure treatments.
- Diuretics (pills for increasing flow of during
- Prostate cancer drugs
- Chemotherapy medications
- Parkinson’s disease drugs
- Antiarrhythmics (for irregular heart beat)
- Histamine H2-receptor antigonists
- Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs
- Antihypertensives (for high blood pressure)
- Muscle relaxants
How is erectile dysfunction (ED) diagnosed?
We have just seen that ED has a variety of causes and for that reason, doctors also have to go through a variety of procedures to diagnose the condition and ascertain the cause of the condition so it can be treated.
Your medical history
Prior to ordering any kind of test, your doctor will need to go through your medical history together with a thorough medical examination. You will also be interviewed about your personal life and sexual history.
While the “interview” may appear to intrude into your private life, it’s very important that your responses are sincere and honest and they may include questions that relate to:
- Medication you are now using such as prescription drugs, over-the-counter drugs, herbs supplements and illegal drugs.
- Any psychological issues you have suffered such as depression, anxiety and stress
- The first time you noticed the erectile dysfunction symptoms
- You erections as to their frequency, duration and strengths
- When you have them, in the mornings or evenings
- Your sexual techniques
- Any problem you’ve encountered with your present relationship
After your interview and following discussions, your doctor may direct that the following tests be performed:
- Complete blood count (CBC) – these involve blood tests that detect if anemia is present or not.
- Liver and kidney function tests – to show whether ED may be because you liver or kidneys aren’t functioning properly.
- Lipid profile – to measure the level of lipids (fats) such as cholesterol.
- Thyroid function test – thyroid hormones control the production of sex hormones. Low levels indicate may be responsible for your ED.
- Blood hormone test – hormones testosterone and prolactin levels may be measured to determine if there are abnormalities in them.
- Urinalysys – An analysis of your urine which can supply much information such as testosterone, protein or sugar levels. Deficiency in any of them can cause ED.
- Duplex ultrasound – touted to be the best test for ED that uses high-frequency sound waves to draw pictures of your body’s tissues. It can check signs of venous leak, hardening of arteries or scarring. The test is done when the penis is erect and flaccid.
- Bulbocavernosus reflex – a test to determine penis sensation. The doctor squeezes the head of your penis and your anus immediately contracts. A delay in anus contraction betrays abnormality.
- Nocturnal penile tumescence (NPT) – the test uses the snap gauge and strain gauge methods to test a sleeping man’s erection during the night. No erection means there’s a problem with nerve function and circulation of the penis.
- Penile biothesiometry – electromagnetic vibration is used to determine sensitivity and nerve damage.
- Vasoactive injection – inducing an erection by injecting solutions into the penis to make it dilate so blood can enter the penis and induce an erection.
- Dynamic infusion cavernosometry – a test used on men who have a venous leak.
- Cavernosopograpy – involves the injection of a dye into the penis which is X-rayed to make the venous leak appear.
- Arteriography – the test is used on those to be given vascular reconstructive surgery. The leak is located by injecting the suspected leaking artery with a dye in order to identify the position of the leak.
Prior to carrying out the tests, your doctor will explain what is involved in each test. Don’t be afraid to ask any questions to your doctor.
Treatment of erectile dysfunction
The correct treatment for ED and for any other health condition for that matter is by aiming at what could be causing the condition or exacerbating its severity.
It’s usually the case that the kind of treatment you’ll be given will depend on the cause and seriousness of your erectile dysfunction together with any underlying health conditions you may have.
So you may in fact have different treatment options that you can take for your ED as discussed below:
Medication taken orally strengthens the potency of nitric oxide, a chemical produced by our body that relaxes the muscles of your penis and there are four of them which include:
- Sildenafil (Viagra)
- Tadalafil (Adcirca, Cialis)
- Vardenafil (Levitra, Staxyn)
- Avanafil (Stendra)
The article has attempted to give you valuable information on the various causes, diagnosis and treatment of your erectile dysfunction. There are also a variety of causes that may induce erectile dysfunction to make an appearance in your body. There are also a variety of tests that can be used to diagnose your case as well as treatment for you ED. It’s obvious that you should have ready contact with your doctor and a dependable online pharmacist.