What is Erectile Dysfunction

Erectile dysfunction (ED) is the inability to get or keep an erection firm enough to have sexual intercourse. It’s also sometimes referred to as impotence. Occasional ED isn’t uncommon. Many men experience it during times of stress. … Not all male sexual problems are caused by erectile dysfunction

What type of treatments are available?

A variety of drugs and treatments are available for ED, from pills to implants, shock wave therapy to surgeries. Some treatments have significant side effects.  Each treatment depends on your physical and mental health.

Life Cycle of the Penis

Your penis goes through a series of changes over your lifetime.  Each phase controlled by your testosterone.

Between 9-15 years of age your pituitary gland releases hormones that start making testosterone.  Puberty begins along with changes in your testes, scrotum, penis and pubic hair grows. Testosterone peaks in your late teens to early 20’s.

Slight drops in testosterone appears in your late 20’s through your 40’s

After 40 your body makes more sex hormone binding globulin (SHGB). This sticks to the testosterone in your blood and decreases the amount your body has to use.

Changes occur such as pubic hair becomes thin and graying. Penis size seems smaller. Penis shape may change, for some men it may curve with age.

Testicles – as your testosterone levels fall, sperm production slows and they shrink.

What Types of Medications are Used for Erectile Dysfunction?

The good news is multiple choices are now on the market for treating erectile dysfunction.  Talk with your doctor to determine which option is best for you

  • Sildenafil is the brand name for Viagra
  • Tadalafil is the brand name for Clalis
  • Vardenafil is brand name for Levitra
  • Avanafil brand name for Stendra

Oysters – Have antioxidant mineral zinc, produces DNA repairing cells and helps protect against cellular damage that leads to prostate cancer. Zinc also enhances the reproductive system including increased sperm counts.

Shellfish, Lean Beef and Legumes – Provides recommended doses of zinc.

Fatty Fish – Provides health fat Omega 3- benefits the heart, circulation and immune system and reduce prostate cancer.  They are also an anti inflammatory foods. This also provides a good source of vitamin D, which helps prevent cancer and type 2 diabetes.

You can also get omega-3’s in plant-based foods, like flaxseed, walnuts, soy and eggs.

Cruciferous Vegetables –(Broccoli, cabbage, brussels sprouts, bok choy)  are loaded with vitamin C, beta-carotene, potassium and sulphoraphane, which has strong anticancer (prostate and colon) properties.

Oatmeal and Barley – Are rich in soluble fiber and full of B vitamins that help lower LDL the bad cholesterol and good for the prostate.

Plant Stanols – Substances in fruits and vegetables that has shown to lower mildly elevated blood cholesterol levels.

Blueberries and Cherries – Violet, blue and red colors in all kinds of berries and cherries provide healthy properties such as flavonoid and anthocyanin and contain over 4000 different compounds that have antioxidant properties beyond C and enhance brain function.

Red and Orange Vegetables- Vitamin C and beta-carotene are antioxidants that help preserve healthy skin cells and prevent oxidation rom the sun. Studies show men whose diets were high in nutrients found in vegetables were found to be less likely to develop benign prostatic hyperplasia.

Brazil Nuts – These nuts are packed with magnesium and selenium that may help prevent heart disease and caner in prostate health.

Whole Grains – Whole grains provide fiber, vitamins and minerals – all factors for heart health and  building muscle.

Chocolate – Improves blood flow if you eat the right kind.  The flavonols in dark chocolate curb bad cholesterol, improve circulation and keep blood pressure in check.

Soy –  Offers the best protection against prostate cancer.

For many men a physical with your doctor is all that is needed to diagnose erectile dysfunction and a recommended treatment.  Depending on medical history additional testing may needed.

  • Blood tests. A sample of your blood might be sent to a lab to check for signs of heart disease, diabetes, low testosterone levels and other health conditions.
  • Urine tests (urinalysis). Like blood tests, urine tests are used to look for signs of diabetes and other underlying health conditions.
  • Ultrasound. This test is usually performed by a specialist in an office. It involves using a wand device (transducer) held over the blood vessels that supply the penis. It creates a video image to let your doctor see if you have blood flow problems.
  • Psychological exam. Your doctor might ask questions to screen for depression and other possible psychological causes of erectile dysfunction.

Depending on the results of testing your primary care physician may prescribe medication or refer you to a specialist who will provide treatment options for the best outcomes.

Erectile dysfunction treatments vary:

  • Medication
  • Testosterone Replacement
  • P-Shot®
  • Shockwave Therapy
  • Implants