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Erectile Dysfunction or Impotence

Impotence, or what doctors prefer to call, erectile dysfunction, is a common problem, affecting about 20% of boys (1 in 5).Erectile dysfunction can be a warning sign of heart disease. It is a problem that can occur at any age but is most common after age 40.Sexuality in men is a fundamental aspect of life and issues of sexuality can seriously affect occupational and marital relationships.

What is erectile dysfunction?
Erectile dysfunction is the inability to maintain an erection sufficiently rigid for satisfactory sexual intercourse.
How common is erectile dysfunction?
All men may have trouble achieving an erection at some point in their lives, especially when they are tired, under stress or under the influence of alcohol or suffering from a serious illness.

In our country, erectile dysfunction affects 43% of men between 25 and 70 years. This means that more than two million Indians have impotence.The frequency of erectile dysfunction increases with age and affects 14% of men aged 40-49 years, 25% of men aged 50 to 59 and 49% of 60-69 years.

Why erectile dysfunction occurs?
The penis consists of two columns of erectile tissue called corpora cavernosa (produce an erection) and a passage (urethra) that drains urine. During erection, erectile tissue that fills with blood, the penis enlarges and becomes rigid.

Anatomy of the penis
In the corpora cavernosa are cavities that are called sinusoids and flaccidity are empty. When an erection occurs, arrives lot of blood to the corpora cavernosa and these sinusoids relax and stored blood. A suitable inlet and the blood storage enlargement occurs and rigidity of the penis. If blood is not properly inserted, or escapes from the sinusoids, then a difficulty occurs to achieve and / or maintain rigidity.

As erection occurs
Erectile dysfunction can be organic (physical origin) or psychological (psychological origin). However, in many patients with ED of organic origin a psychological component that is added worsens.Organic impotence is the most common and is caused by a disorder of the penis or mechanisms related to erection. Several types of erectile dysfunction:

a) Vascular
It is very common. It occurs when little blood to the penis comes or not properly retained within the corpora cavernosa, resulting in a leakage of blood and a sharp decrease in erection.The most common causes of vascular impotence include diabetes, hypertension, increased cholesterol, smoking, and cardiovascular disease. In these patients with cardiovascular risk factors, erectile dysfunction may be the first symptom "sentinel" of cardiovascular disease will progress over time.

b) Neurological
When there are problems in the transmission of orders that the brain and spinal cord sent to the penis through nerve sparing, for an erection to occur.

Produce this type of impotence diabetes, spinal diseases and surgeries for prostate, bladder and rectum (damage to nerve sparing) cancer.

c) Hormonal
When the body produces less male hormone (testosterone) from which it is needed. Donomina hypogonadism.

d) By drugs
Many drugs used to treat diseases such as hypertension or depression can affect erectile function.

e) Psychological
In these cases the penile rigidity mechanism is normal, but the erection is complicated by psychological problems that may be due to performance anxiety (fear of not getting an erection), relationship problems, depression or other psychological problems. The stress of any kind can affect the sexual act.