Can smoking cigarettes lead to erectile dysfunction?

Smoking can produce vascular disease, which leads to decreased blood flow. Decreased blood flow to the penis is one cause of erectile dysfunction.
Robert S. Kaufmann, MD
Internal Medicine
Yes it does. The penis is a circulatory organ so if you effect the blood vessels you can effect the ability for the penis to have an erection. Anybody with peripheral vascular disease or any other medical  problems who smoke will have severe problems so definitely any circulatory organ will have difficulty if you continue to smoke.
Madeleine M. Castellanos, MD
Psychiatry
Cigarette smoking causes both immediate short-term spasms of blood vessels as well as long-term damage to blood vessels. This means decreased response to sexual stimulation so that the arteries can't relax enough to allow proper blood flow and putting a damper on your erection. Even though they are very helpful in quitting, nicotine patches and gum shouldn't be used indefinitely since the nicotine they contain causes very strong spasms of arteries and decreased blood flow to the penis.
Dr. Mehmet Oz, MD
Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease)
For sure. In fact, cigarette smoking can snuff out your sex life. Here are the grim facts: Smokers are more likely to develop erectile dysfunction (ED), the inability to get and maintain an erection during sex, than non-smokers. How? Smoking causes heart disease that restricts the blood flow to your penis. Without  good flow to your penis, say good-bye to erections. If that’s not reason enough to stop smoking, puffing away decreases your body’s production of nitric acid, a chemical that opens your arteries so that more blood can make its way to your penis. Low blood flow equals soft or no erections. Enough said.
Dr. Michael Roizen, MD
Internal Medicine
Remember that old joke about whether you smoke after sex? If you are still smoking, the joke may be on you. Smoking increases your risk of erectile dysfunction (ED). It does so directly by decreasing the ability of your body to use nitric acid, a quick-acting compound that keeps your arteries open, and lets blood flow into your penis, causing an erection. Smoking causes ED indirectly by causing heart disease, which itself interferes with blood flow to your penis.

Continue Learning about Impact Of Nicotine Addiction On The Body

Impact Of Nicotine Addiction On The Body

Impact Of Nicotine Addiction On The Body

Nicotine addiction is just as strong as addiction to alcohol or cocaine, and it causes changes in the brain that make you crave nicotine even more. Once inhaled into the lungs through smoke, nicotine is absorbed into the bloodstre...

am and carried throughout your body. Nicotine can affect the heart, blood vessels, hormones and brain function. Learn more from our experts about how to overcome it.
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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.