5 Questions to Ask an Erectile Dysfunction (ED) Doctor
Discover what might be causing your erectile dysfunction at Assure Wellness Group. We can help you enhance your sexual function. For more information, please call us or request an appointment online. We have convenient locations to serve you in Chesapeake VA, Chevy Chase MD, Alexandria VA, Jacksonville NC.
Table of Contents:
What is erectile dysfunction (ED)?
What causes erectile dysfunction?
How common is ED?
How is erectile dysfunction diagnosed?
How is ED treated?
Sexual health is an important aspect of each person’s well-being. In fact, good sexual health is essential to a good quality of life. However, sexual health problems often referred to as sexual dysfunction, are very prevalent. Although the percentage of the population affected by sexual dysfunction greatly varies, it is estimated that 10% to 52% of men and 25% to 63% of women have some form of sexual dysfunction. Erectile dysfunction, or ED, is a common sexual dysfunction that affects men, which results in the inability or difficulty to get or maintain an erection.
Erectile dysfunction (ED) is the inability or extreme difficulty to attain or maintain an erection firm enough to have sexual intercourse. It is sometimes referred to as impotence, although this term is not as accurate and is not used as often. Occasional ED is not uncommon and affects many men during times of stress. Frequent or persistent ED, however, can be a sign of health problems that should be evaluated by a medical professional. It can also be a sign of emotional or relationship difficulties that may need to be addressed by a mental health professional.
Erectile dysfunction can be caused by problems with any of the following systems:
– Blood flow (circulatory system)
– Nerve supply (nervous system)
– Hormones (endocrine system)
Physical causes account for 90 percent of ED cases, the most common include:
– Heart disease and narrowing of blood vessels
– High blood pressure
– High cholesterol
– Obesity and metabolic syndrome
– Parkinson’s disease
– Multiple sclerosis
– Hormonal disorders including thyroid conditions and testosterone deficiency
– Structural or anatomical disorder of the penis
– Smoking, alcoholism, and substance abuse, including cocaine use
– Treatments for prostate disease
– Surgical complications
– Injuries in the pelvic area or spinal cord
– Radiation therapy to the pelvic region
Numerous prescription medications can also cause ED, however, anyone taking prescription medications should consult their primary care physician before stopping or changing their medications. These include:
– Drugs to control high blood pressure
– Heart medications
– Some diuretics
– Drugs that act on the central nervous system, including amphetamines, methylphenidate and some sleeping pills
– Anxiety treatments
– Antidepressants, including:
• Monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs)
• Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs)
• Tricyclic antidepressants
– Opioid painkillers
– Some cancer drugs, including chemotherapeutic agents
– Prostate treatment drugs
– Hormone drugs
Psychological causes are less common than physical causes, and can include factors such as:
– Fear of intimacy
– Severe anxiety
Erectile dysfunction is a very common condition. At some point, problems achieving or sustaining an erection happen to almost every male. In many cases, it can be a temporary issue and may not persist beyond a few occasions. However, ED can be a regular problem for some men. It affects approximately 30 million men in the United States or about 18% of the population.
To help diagnose ED, one of the first things a doctor will do is discuss medical and sexual history with the patient. They will inquire about sexual health, and may ask the following:
– How confident you are that you can achieve and maintain an erection
– If you can sustain an erection long enough for intercourse when sexually stimulated
– How often do you find sexual intercourse satisfying
– If you have an erection upon waking up
– How you would rate your libido or level of sexual desire
– How often you are able to orgasm and ejaculate
– Any surgical procedures or treatments that may have damaged your nerves or blood vessels that could affect the blood flow to the penis
– Any prescription or non-prescription medicines you take
– If you smoke, drink alcohol or use illicit substances
The examining physician may also perform a physical exam to help diagnose the cause of ED. This can help determine:
– If the penis is sensitive to touch, which can rule out problems with the nervous system
– If the penis has an abnormal appearance, such as Peyronie’s disease, that is causing problems
– If the body has extra hair or breast enlargement, which can point to hormonal problems
– Blood pressure and pulse, as lack of blood flow, can lead to ED
The treatment for erectile dysfunction depends on its underlying cause. Other factors that affect treatment options include the severity of the condition if any pre-existing conditions are present, and how the patient responds to treatment. If ED is caused by hormonal imbalances, hormone replacement therapy is the best treatment option. However, if it is caused by psychological issues, a mental health specialist may be able to address these concerns.
If you are experiencing difficulty getting or maintaining an erection, you may have erectile dysfunction. At Assure Wellness Group, we specialize in treating ED and can help develop an individualized treatment plan that uniquely addresses your needs. Our kind and compassionate professionals are dedicated to delivering the highest level of service for each patient, at every visit. Call us today to book an appointment, or visit our clinic conveniently. We serve patients from Chesapeake VA, Chevy Chase MD, Alexandria VA, Portsmouth VA, Norfolk VA, Virginia Beach VA, Suffolk VA, Laurel VA, Atlee Ridge VA, Henrico VA, Poindexters VA, Elmont VA, Kingstowne VA, Groveton VA, Annandale VA, Springfield VA, Hybla Valley VA, Jacksonville NC, Half Moon NC, Piney Green NC, Pumpkin Center NC and Surrounding Areas.
Additional Services You May Need
▸ Hormonal Imbalance
▸ Weight Loss
▸ Sexual Health
▸ Low Testosterone
▸ Bio-Identical Hormone Replacement Therapy Men
▸ Bio-Identical Hormone Replacement Therapy Women