Sydney: An Australian study says men aged 20 years or older with erectile dysfunction - compared to similarly aged men in the general population - have twice the risk of developing a cardiovascular event later such as heart attack or stroke.
“The findings suggest that compared to men without erectile dysfunction, there is an increasing risk of ischemic heart disease, peripheral vascular disease and other heart conditions in those with severe erectile dysfunction,” explained Emily Banks from National Centre for Epidemiology and Population Health in Australia.
“Worse the erectile dysfunction, higher the risk of cardiovascular disease,” Banks added.
The researchers included a total of 95,038 men in this analysis.
The male participants completed a postal questionnaire that included a question on erectile functioning, which allowed the researchers to define erectile dysfunction as none, mild, moderate or severe.
Using this information, the researchers were able to determine health outcomes of all study participants.
The researchers found that those with severe erectile dysfunction were more likely to develop ischemic heart disease, heart failure, peripheral vascular disease and other causes of cardiovascular disease than men without erectile dysfunction.
The risks of heart attacks and heart conduction problems were also increased in those with severe erectile dysfunction.
Men with erectile dysfunction, even at mild or moderate levels, should be screened and treated for cardiovascular disease accordingly, said the study published in the journal PLOS Medicine.