- Smokers and diabetics have higher chances of getting heart disease
- Quitting smoking is a good start to avoid risks.
Chinese researchers from The Second Affiliated Hospital of Nanchang University suggest that erectile dysfunction (ED) is indicative of heart disease, stroke or premature death in men.
Those who find themselves having difficulty getting it up are 59% more likely to develop heart disease.
Being impotent is also a good sign that a man will likely suffer from stroke (34%) and will also most likely die at an early age (33%).
Weak erections are basically a sign that a man’s body has poor blood flow.
The researchers describe erectile dysfunction as, “inability to reach or maintain an erection that is satisfactory for sex.”
About 100 million men worldwide experience this condition and the number is expected to go up to 300 million by the year 2025.
Dr. Wenxiong Zhang and the scientists had 154,794 participants and analyzed 25 studies relevant to their research.
The risk of getting heart disease, stroke, and early death with impotent men over 55 years old were much higher, especially when they are diabetic or active smokers, as the study found.
Atherosclerosis, the build-up of plaque in the arteries is the main reason why erectile dysfunction and heart diseases occur.
The arteries in a man’s penis is much narrower compared to the one found in the heart, which is why erectile dysfunction is an indicator of upcoming heart disease.
Dr. Ron Blankstein, of Brigham and Women’s Hospital, told CNN: “The penile artery that delivers blood flow to the penis is a much smaller diameter, and it’s the smaller blood vessels which show the first signs of disease.”
He also says that if ED is regular, then men should seek medical help immediately.
“If erectile dysfunction is a repeated pattern, a man really needs to pay aggressive attention to potentially having heart disease.”
ED is also associated with depression, which makes sense because it affects the self-esteem of a man, and is also a risk factor for heart disease.
The study also found that mentally unstable patients are also less likely to seek treatment for ED.
The scientists say that cardiologist and urologist should dig deeper on their male patients’ sexual health during checkups to help predict risks.
Men can start reducing their chances of getting heart disease by quitting smoking entirely.
Blankstein describes smoking as, ‘[The] single most important modifiable risk factor’.
Impotent men should exercise more and lose weight to improve their condition.
‘I think the important message is at the very least, you need to pay attention to your underlying risk factors for heart disease, smoking, diabetes, and high cholesterol,’ Blankstein concluded.