Erectile Dysfunction Causes: Physical

Did You Know: 90% of cases of erectile dysfunction are caused by physical factors.

The physical factors that cause and/or contribute to ED can be classified into two categories: vascular (related to blood flow) and non-vascular disease. It is estimated that 70% of all ED cases may be attributable to vascular diseases alone.

The penis requires a healthy blood flow to become completely erect, and even a marginal reduction in blood flow can potentially cause problems. This condition is referred to as “vascular insufficiency” and is known to be caused by, or associated with, the following risk factors:

Furthermore, research indicates that more than 200 prescription medications can potentially cause, contribute to, or aggravate ED. However, it is imperative that you must not discontinue your medications unless otherwise instructed by your physician. Other associated physical conditions or causes are less common.

These include:

  • Hormonal deficiencies caused by testicular disease, liver disease or thyroid problems.
  • Neurological problems such as Multiple Sclerosis, Stroke or Parkinson’s disease.
  • Trauma to the pelvic area as experienced in certain types of surgery, radiation therapy or automobile accidents resulting in damaged pelvic nerves or arteries.
  • Chronic illnesses such as chronic liver disease, chronic renal disease etc.
  • Peyronie’s plaque or disease, a peculiar condition of excessive fibrosis in the penile tissue

It is not uncommon, however, to see ED in an otherwise completely healthy person, both physically and psychologically. It is postulated that the penile circulation is intrinsically precarious, being an end-artery. As men age, partial obstructions to the blood flow of the penis may become more common. While this may in inconsequential under normal conditions, it may be enough to cause insufficient blood flow to the penis when sexually aroused.

  • Diabetes
  • Hypertension
  • High Blood Cholesterol
  • Cardiac diseases
  • Smoking
  • Poor Overall Circulation

Erectile Dysfunction Causes: Psychological

Psychological factors account for about 10% of erection problems and often result from nervousness, performance anxiety or fear of failure during lovemaking.

These factors cause a surge of adrenaline which reduces blood flow to the penile area, often resulting in erectile difficulty. Psychological ED may become self-perpetuating. After several episodes of repeated failure, the body becomes accustomed to releasing adrenaline at the very thought of a sexual encounter. This can become a vicious cycle difficult to break without help.

Other less common causes include stress, low sexual drive, guilt, anxiety, sexual boredom or depression. The characteristics of psychological erectile dysfunction include:

  • The ability to achieve or maintain an erection with one partner but not with another.
  • The ability to achieve or maintain strong and lasting erections in the mornings and during masturbation but not during lovemaking.
  • The tendency to affect younger men with unstable relationships or unsettling past experiences.