Does Diabetes Cause Erectile Dysfunction


A chronic health condition like diabetes can contribute to erectile dysfunction (ED) in males. The condition is characterized by the body's inability to produce or use insulin effectively.

Impairment of insulin function leads to a rise in the levels of sugar (glucose) in the blood. When the blood sugar levels remain persistently high over a long time, then this may contribute to the damage of blood vessels and nerves.

The health and response of the erection function depend on vascular health. So, the damage caused by diabetes to vascular health can lead to erectile dysfunction (ED).

The link between diabetes and erectile dysfunction

Individuals with diabetes have a greater chance of developing issues related to their sexual function. Difficulties with erection function are quite common among such men.

The rise in blood sugar levels can be prevented with treatments. The treatments are geared towards monitoring blood sugar ups and downs and they help bring the blood sugar level down to a safe range.   

How does diabetes lead to ED?

Vascular function damage

Persistent high blood pressure can have a damaging effect on your blood vessels and their function. The blood vessels that supply blood to the penile also get impacted because of diabetes.

The damage can lead to the impairment of the blood circulation to the penile. The health of the erection function depends on the blood flow to the penile.

When there is adequate blood flow, the penile arteries can trap it under high pressure to promote firmer erections. However, the vascular dysfunction in the penile can trigger erection problems.

Nerve damage

Nerve damage or diabetic neuropathy can impact the signal transmission from the brain to the penile blood vessels. Individuals with diabetes are susceptible to nerve damage.

This can cause interference in the transmission of signals of arousal by the brain to the nerves of the penile. In this way, the penile will fail to receive the signals and the blood flow to the penile does not happen.

Lack of adequate blood flow to the penile causes failure to get and sustain erections.

Hormonal fluctuations

Diabetes can lead to hormonal imbalances. It can affect the testosterone production and release in the body. Since testosterone hormone has a primary role in sexual function, its decline contributes to issues related to sex drive and erectile dysfunction (ED).

Anti-diabetic medications

Certain antidiabetics used to manage blood sugar levels and bring them down to safe levels can cause ED. This can be a potential side effect of certain medications.

Lifestyle factors

Individuals living with diabetes are more susceptible to the risk of developing erectile dysfunction. If the person also has some other health condition such as obesity, high blood pressure (hypertension), and high cholesterol, all of which can worsen the symptoms of ED.  

If you have any of these health conditions, then your chances of developing ED are high. This is so because all these health conditions contribute to vascular disorders.

Since the erection function is heavily dependent upon vascular health, any harm to it will lead to ED.

How to manage erectile dysfunction effectively?

ED medicines are regarded as one of the safest and most effective remedies for managing erectile dysfunction symptoms. Such medications have a key ingredient, which helps improve vascular functioning.          

ED medications are pure vasodilators, their function is to increase the flow of blood to the penile. They expand the penile arteries and by increasing the blood flow inside they help men achieve and maintain stronger erections.

The FDA has approved several ED pills, that include, Viagra, Cialis, Stendra, Levitra, and Staxyn. The generic versions of these medications are also available at lower costs. Malegra 100 is a generic version of Viagra, they both work similarly. 

ED medicines work only in the presence of sexual arousal. The erections will not be triggered spontaneously. Men with diabetes can also make use of these medicines by consulting their healthcare provider.  

Guidance from the healthcare provider is necessary.

The lowdown

An increase in the levels of blood sugar potentiates the risk of health issues. When the sugar levels in the blood remain persistently high over a period, then this enhances the chances of developing diabetic complications.

Sexual function also gets majorly influenced as a result. It is essential to seek medical intervention, which will be beneficial for slowing down the damage caused by the chronic illness.

Early diagnosis and treatment will lower the risk of diabetic complications. The condition can be effectively managed with the help of medications.     

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