What are the symptoms of erectile dysfunction (erection problems)?

Erectile dysfunction (ED) is characterized by the inability to:
  • achieve an erection;
  • maintain an erection;
  • penetrate your partner.
When a man experiences ED on a regular basis, the symptoms may interfere with his self-image as well as his and his partner's sexual life. A wide range of treatments can restore men’s sexual functioning.
Dr. Mehmet Oz, MD
Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease)
The symptoms of erectile dysfunction (ED) include problems getting and sustaining an erection more than 25% of the time. Total ED is the inability to have an erection at all. But it may also be ED if you can have an erection but cannot sustain it long enough to achieve penetration and have sex. This happens to every man once in a while, but if it happens more than one time in four for you, you should see your doctor to see if you have ED, and find out what may be causing it. 

The symptoms of erectile dysfunction may vary depending on the cause and the severity of the condition. Obviously, the major signs of ED are having problems getting an erection that's firm or long enough to have sex, or having problems maintaining an erection for a sufficient amount of time to have sex. Some men may also experience a decrease in sex drive. Some men may be able to get an erection sometimes but not others, and some men may not be able to get an erection at all. In all cases of ED, though, symptoms are frequent or persistent.

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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.