What is ED, what are the symptoms, and what are the causes?
Erectile dysfunction, or ED, is the inability to get and keep an erection. ED is a broad term used to describe many problems with an erection and is often caused by physical factors.
- The most common problem is the penis does not become firm enough for penetration due to a lack of blood flow to the penile tissue.
- ED includes erections that don’t last long enough for “satisfactory” sex.
- Symptoms of ED can include premature ejaculation, delayed ejaculation or the inability to ejaculate.
- Peyronie’s disease is the development of fibrous scar tissue inside the penis that causes curved, often painful erections.
- ED can also be a result of nerve damage, which can be caused by diabetes, MS, prostate surgery or injury to the spinal cord.
- Reduced penile sensitivity can contribute to ED.
- There may be a physical cause for lack of desire for sex (low libido), and this can be treated.
- Prostate surgery can cause ED and the recovery period can be a year or more. There are procedures available at the Acoustic Wave Clinic that may help with symptoms post prostatectomy.
- Other physical conditions that can contribute to ED can include: heart disease, atherosclerosis, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity, metabolic syndrome, Parkinson’s disease, Multiple Sclerosis, the use of medications, tobacco use, alcoholism and other forms of substance abuse, sleep disorders, treatments for prostate cancer or an enlarged prostate.
The Components of Male Sexual Function
Being able to achieve an erection is a complex process involving both psychological and physical factors. The three essential components of male sexual function include the desire for sexual activity (libido), the ability to obtain and maintain an erection, and the ability to ejaculate and climax (orgasm). If ED is an issue, it is important to have an exam by a qualified specialist who can evaluate these three components and determine the root cause of your issues. Most often ED is physical in origin and can be caused by lack of blood flow, hormone imbalance, damage to the nerves, or can even be a side effect of medication. All of these can be treated.
Psychological issues such as anxiety, depression, fatigue, stress, feelings of inadequacy, or past sexual abuse can contribute. We encourage you to seek the help of a professional therapist if you feel you have any psychological issues that may be contributing to your Erectile Dysfunction.
Occasional episodes of ED are normal but when it is a repetitive problem that is when it’s time to seek help. ED can be devastating to the self-esteem of a man, can affect the self confidence of his partner and cause serious relationship issues. ED can prevent him from seeking out new relationships, or can simply make him feel that an important part of his life is missing. ED can be a problem for men of any age, the prevalence increasing with age. At age 40 about 40% of men experience some level of ED. It is estimated that by the age of 50, 50% of men suffer from some level of ED, and it goes up 10% with each decade. Sadly, many men are reluctant to talk about this, even with their medical provider, so they suffer in silence. However, it doesn’t need to be this way!
The expert providers at the Acoustic Wave Clinic of Minnesota can help! They assess your physical issues in a caring, supportive and confidential environment. They get to the root cause of your erectile dysfunction and create a unique treatment plan with the goal of healing your body. Acoustic Wave therapy restores existing blood vessels and stimulates the growth of new blood vessels (angiogenesis). This creates greater blood flow and increased sensitivity to the penile tissue. Increased function results in a firmer, larger, more satisfying erection. The most advanced treatments correct the root causes of ED and can be life changing!
Your Health is Important to Us!
As discussed above, ED can be an early warning sign of a serious health issue such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, cardiovascular disease or a heart condition. Because of this it is VERY important to discuss it with a qualified provider who can assess your situation and help you achieve better sexual and overall health. The providers at the Acoustic Wave Clinic of Minnesota (part of Medical Specialists, PA) are experts in this field.