What is erectile dysfunction

Erectile dysfunction (impotence) is man’s permanent difficulty in obtaining or maintaining an erection, it may be a sign of chronic disease.

Many men get scared when they can’t maintain an erection, and while it is normal from time to time, this event can be a sign that something is wrong with the patient’s body or mind. If it occurs frequently (once every four intercourse), it is ideal to seek medical attention.

It is estimated that sexual impotence affects 12% of men under 60, demystifying the idea that it is an age problem. However, it is a fact that is more frequent in the elderly: among the over 70, the problem occurs in 30% of men.

The causes of erectile dysfunction are very different and may be of physical origin (such as vascular disease), mental (such as depression) or even in relation to lifestyle (e.g. smoking).

Currently, there are several treatments for erectile dysfunction and there are still others being studied. Therefore, do not be ashamed to visit an urologist if you suffer from the problem: with the treatment you just have to win!

How does an erection occur?

Sometimes it comes out of nowhere, other times it needs well-defined erotic stimuli to happen. Either way, the erection depends on a very specific mechanism to function.

The penis is formed by three long tubes: two corpora cavernosa that remain side by side and a spongy body housing the urethra located in the lower part of the organ for more visit this website

Corpora cavernosa is responsible for the increase in volume and stiffness during erection. When the organ is relaxed, they look more like a dry and malleable sponge. Already when there is an erection, the brain sends signals so that the arteries in the region expand and release more blood inside these tubes. Then, corpora cavernosa is softened with blood and increased in volume and stiffness, like a sponge in contact with water.

This increase in volume in the tubes causes the corpora cavernosa to “pinch” the veins that drain the blood from the penis, ensuring that the blood stays there, leaving the body stiff and clumsy to remain erect for a longer period of time.

Any difficulty in this process, from nerve signs to enlargement of the arteries, can cause dysfunction in the erectile mechanism.


Erectile dysfunction is related to a large number of causes, few of which are really directly related to the penis. Some are more common at certain ages, while others can occur at any time. Understand:



Anxiety is a normal physiological reaction to times when it takes to play something. However, it can occur at inappropriate times and this configures a psychological disorder.

In terms of erection, anxiety alters this function due to the release of adrenaline into the bloodstream. This hormone narrows the blood vessels and therefore the blood has difficulty reaching the penis.


Another psychological disorder related to erection is depression characterized by intense sadness and loss of interest in enjoyable activities. It is known that depression in many cases lowers libido and consequently complicates erection.


Stressful situations release several hormones into the bloodstream which make circulation to the penis difficult.


Vascular problems

Since the erection depends on the blood flow to the penis, any condition that interferes with this process may be the cause of erectile dysfunction. Some of these problems are hardening of the arteries (arteriosclerosis), which usually occurs with age, stroke, hypertension, heart problems and high cholesterol.

Neurological problems

Spinal cord injuries, multiple sclerosis, and nerve degeneration are conditions that may be related to sexual impotence. This is because these conditions rarely intersect the nerves path, prevent the arrival of nerve signals to the penis or even damage the nerves of the penis.

Hormonal problems

Hormonal imbalances, especially the lack of testosterone, greatly affect the possibility of having an erection of quality for more click here


Priapism is a condition in which an erection not caused by sexual desire occurs for a long atypical duration: 4 hours or more. Generally, this occurs due to an abnormal penetration, or which prevents the flow of blood into the penis, resulting in a prolonged erection.

The problem is that this condition damages the tissues of the penis, which can then cause erectile dysfunction.

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