Can an enlarged prostate cause erectile dysfunction?

Erectile dysfunction (ED) is not among the common symptoms of an enlarged prostate. The most common symptom is a weak urine flow. Occasionally surgery for an enlarged prostate, a procedure called transurethral resection of the prostate, in which part of the prostate is cut away, may cause erectile dysfunction. More often this procedure results in the inability to ejaculate because semen goes into the bladder instead of out of the penis.

If you are struggling with ED, talk to your doctor as this could be the sign of a serious health condition such as heart disease.
Dr. Mehmet Oz, MD
Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease)
Having an enlarged prostate may be annoying, but it does not cause erectile dysfunction. However, certain treatments for enlarged prostate can raise the risk for problems getting and sustaining an erection.

An enlarged prostate, also called benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), may not cause any symptoms. Yet many men with BPH develop maddening problems such as a frequent and urgent need to urinate. Others can only manage a dribble when they attempt to pee. Many find themselves climbing out of bed several times a night to use the bathroom.

Most men with BPH manage the condition by making lifestyle changes or taking oral medications. Unfortunately, some common drugs prescribed to treat BPH can cause erectile dysfunction, though the problem goes away if you stop taking the medicine. Furthermore, serious cases of BPH may require surgery to remove excess prostate tissue that's causing all the problems. A small number of men may develop erectile dysfunction following these surgical procedures, though most appear to regain sexual function again over time.

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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.