Can high blood pressure cause erectile dysfunction?

High blood pressure (hypertension) is the dirty, rotten scoundrel behind many health conditions, including erectile dysfunction (ED). Years of hypertension eventually cause your arteries to become inflexible, sort of like your mother-in-law (no offense, please!). As a result of this hardening, blood flow is reduced throughout your body, including to your penis. No blood flow, no woody, no lovin’.

OK, you think, “I’ll take the pills my doctor has prescribed to bring my blood pressure down. That should solve the problem.” Not so fast! Unfortunately, many of the drugs that treat high blood pressure also cause erectile dysfunction. Major double whammy! It’s not the end of the road, though. Talk to your doc about other blood pressure meds. Docs have pills that lower blood pressure and pills that increase libido, but you need to tell your doc about your side effects so you can get the best blood pressure medication and the best ED pill, if needed. Better lifestyle choices such as losing weight, avoiding tobacco and drinking in moderation, can lower blood pressure and make erections better.

Dr. Mehmet Oz, MD
Cardiologist (Heart Specialist)

Erectile dysfunction may be one symptom of serious health problems that need to be treated. Watch this video by Dr. Oz to learn more about the link between health and erectile dysfunction.

High blood pressure (hypertension) damages the arteries that feed the penis. Two chambers full of sponge-like tissue run the length of the penis. This tissue is filled with muscle, veins and arteries. Brain and nerve impulses cause the chambers to relax, and blood flows into the arteries. When the veins or arteries are damaged, blood can’t travel to the penis properly. This makes getting an erection difficult.

High blood pressure can be caused by poor lifestyle habits, such as smoking.

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It is possible for high blood pressure to cause erectile dysfunction, especially if it is left untreated. High blood pressure damages your arteries and reduces the amount of blood that is able to flow through them. If the arteries controlling blood flow to your penis become hardened or narrow it may become increasingly difficult to keep an erection or to get one at all.

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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.