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Is aging a factor for erectile dysfunction (ED)?

Madeleine M. Castellanos, MD
Psychiatry
If the seemingly ubiquitous ads for medications like Viagra, Levitra, and Cialis are any indication, erectile dysfunction (ED) is a problem that mainly affects middle-aged and older men. It's true that erectile problems appear to increase as men get older: According to the large Massachusetts Male Aging Study, the incidence of ED in men age 70 and older is triple that found in 40-year-old men. Other research suggests that half of all men between the ages of 70 and 78 have ED, compared to 20 percent of men in their fifties.
Dr. Mehmet Oz, MD
Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease)
The number of candles on a guy's birthday cake does play a factor in erectile dysfunction (ED), the inability to get and maintain an erection during sex. But it isn't age itself that chokes off erections. The older a guy gets, the greater his odds of developing cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes, which do cause ED. Virtually, all of these erection-sabotaging diseases restrict blood flow through the body and down under. And here's the really frustrating part of it all: The medication used to treat these serious diseases can also cause ED. You do have options, though. There are medications that will treat the condition while not killing off your sex life. Talk with your doctor.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.