ED is a condition that has become increasingly common in men. It is the inability to maintain an erection sufficient for sexual intercourse.
An occasional inability to maintain an erection happens to most men and is normal. However, ongoing erection problems are a sign of ED and should be evaluated.
In the past, doctors thought psychological issues primarily caused ED. With better understanding of the disease, we now know that the causes of ED are often multi-factorial. In some cases, ED is one of the first signs of an underlying medical problem.
Common causes of ED include:
- Heart disease
- Clogged blood vessels (atherosclerosis)
- High blood pressure
- Metabolic syndrome
Other causes of ED include:
- Certain prescription medications
- Tobacco use
- Alcoholism and other forms of drug abuse
- Treatments for prostate cancer
- Parkinson's disease
- Multiple sclerosis
- Hormonal disorders such as low testosterone (hypogonadism)
- Peyronie's disease
- Surgeries or injuries that affect the pelvic area or spinal cord
Psychological causes include:
- Poor communication or conflict with your partner