About erectile dysfunction (ED)


 Do you sometimes have trouble getting or keeping an erection? You may have erection difficulties, such as erectile dysfunction. This is also known as impotence. And it happens to a lot of men. In fact, most men will have a problem getting an erection at some time in their lives. But for others it happens more often. Studies show that about half of all men in the United States between the ages of 40 and 70 have ED to some degree. 

What is ED?

ED can be a physical problem. Normally, when a man is sexually excited, his penis fills with more blood than usual and it becomes erect or hard. When a man has ED, his penis does not fill with enough blood to get erect or hard. Or it may not stay erect long enough to complete sex.

Many men have this health problem. In fact, about 30 million men in the United States have ED to some degree. And studies show that about half of the men between the ages of 40 and 70 have ED to some degree.


What causes ED?

There are many reasons why a man may develop ED. Despite the common myth, ED is not simply a result of aging. It is more likely to be caused by an underlying health problem.

Some causes of ED can be:

  • high blood pressure
  • high cholesterol
  • diabetes
  • heart disease
  • depression

These things may also cause ED:

  • stress
  • injuries, operations
  • certain medicines
  • smoking, drug abuse, or too much alcohol


  • Attention!

    Remember that no medicine is for everyone. If you use nitrate drugs, often used to control chest pain (also known as angina), don’t take VIAGRA. This combination could cause your blood pressure to drop to an unsafe or life-threatening level. Be sure to ask your doctor if your heart is healthy enough for sexual activity.

    If you are older than age 65, or have serious liver or kidney problems, your doctor may start you at the lowest dose (25 mg) of Viagra. If you are taking protease inhibitors, such as for the treatment of HIV, your doctor may recommend a 25-mg dose and may limit you to a maximum single dose of 25 mg of Viagra in a 48 hour period.

    The most common side effects of VIAGRA are headache, facial flushing, and upset stomach. Less commonly bluish vision, blurred vision, or sensitivity to light may briefly occur.