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How is erectile dysfunction related to heart health?

The term erectile dysfunction (ED) is only associated with male sexual health. From a bird’s-eye view, it is rightfully a sexual disorder. However, medical experts claim that ED also has a relation with a man’s heart health. In this article, Dr Shalabh Agrawal, the best doctor for men health in Gurgaon, explains how erectile dysfunction and heart health are interrelated.

Dr Shalabh Agrawal can be consulted at CK Birla Hospital, the best hospital for men in Gurgaon.

Before we disintegrate this complex relationship between ED and heart, let us get an overview of erectile dysfunction.

What is erectile dysfunction?

Erectile dysfunction is a sexual health condition in which men are unable to attain or hold an erection. The inability to get and maintain an erection is regarded as erectile dysfunction when a man suffers from this incompetence for up to 6 months.

The failure to get an erection once or twice is not considered ED.

If you are experiencing similar symptoms, you can consult Dr Shalabh Agrawal, the best doctor for men health in Gurgaon.

What causes erectile dysfunction?

Erectile dysfunction is majorly a hydraulic event. The penis requires an extra flow of blood to get and hold an erection.

When this blood flow is insufficient or interrupted due to an underlying condition, it leads to erectile dysfunction. A blockage of blood vessels is primarily the cause of ED.

It has been noted that sometimes stress can also impact a man’s sexual performance. There are also other lifestyle issues such as excessive consumption of alcohol, smoking and physical exertion that influence a man’s sexual ability.

What is the link between erectile dysfunction and heart health?

Erectile dysfunction is an indicator of underlying heart disease.

Most often, the interrupted blood flow to the penis is caused as a result of a blocked/clogged artery. This disruption highlights the presence of arterial disease in your body. In most cases, this blocked artery is a symptom of a condition called atherosclerosis. In this condition, excess plague gets buildups inside the arteries blocking the blood flow. Atherosclerosis, if left untreated, can lead to other severe heart conditions such as stroke, angina (chest pain), heart attack and more.

Thereby, ED generally indicates that a man is suffering from an arterial condition preceding a heart disease. However, not all ED cases reflect the presence of heart disease. Only your healthcare provider can diagnose and identify whether or not your erectile dysfunction is associated with heart disease.

What are the risk factors of ED associated with heart disease?

Several risk factors are common between ED and heart diseases. Some of the major risk factors include:

Diabetes – Men who have diabetes are at a greater risk of developing ED and heart diseases. It is because diabetes can cause nerve damage intervening with an erection.

Alcohol – Excessive alcohol consumption can lead to several heart-related problems.

High blood pressure – Hypertension or high blood flow can cause potential damage to the inner lining of your arteries leading to ED and heart diseases.

High cholesterol – High level of cholesterol in the blood can provide ways for possible buildup in the arteries. This cholesterol-filled plague is the primary reason for artery-clogging and further causes erectile dysfunction.

Obesity – Being overweight increases your chances of developing several types of diseases including ED and heart ailments.

Low testosterone – Low levels of testosterone are associated with higher odds of being affected by ED.

Smoking or tobacco use – Prolonged tobacco consumption or smoking cigarettes restrict the flow of blood towards the penis leading to ED.

Some other risk factors include uncontrolled alcohol consumption, age, injury to the penis, chronic illnesses, psychological factors such as anxiety and depression.

Book an appointment with Dr Shalabh Agrawal, the best doctor for men health in Gurgaon to learn more about male reproductive issues. You can visit CK Birla Hospital, the best hospital for men in Gurgaon, for personalised guidance.


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