Erectile Dysfunction

Absent or weak erection is a problem that many men may face at a certain point in their lives. Every man knows his body and in case of absent erection this can be due to physical exhaustion. However, if this problem affects your sex life, then we must identify the cause and treat it accordingly.

First of all, you must know that there is a close relation between the nervous system, circulatory system and reproductive system. The nervous system consists of the brain, spinal cord and nerves. The circulatory system consists of the heart and blood vessels. And the reproductive system contains the penis and other organs.

Let’s start by the causes related to the nervous system that may cause erection difficulties. Basically psychological stress – not sleeping well, depression, marriage trouble and thinking and worrying too much – can cause erection difficulties. Or sometimes its absence for a long time

The second cause can be due to brain tumors or an injured spinal cord, either due to an accident or after undergoing surgery for a herniated intervertebral disc. In such cases erection can be absent. If you experience erection difficulties after surgery, consult your doctor.

Another cause will be medications that affect the nervous system, such as antidepressants or illegal drugs, can affect also your ability of having an erection.

Concerning the circulatory system, what are the factors that may affect your blood vessels? Why is this topic important?

Let me first explain how erection occurs. As you can see here, inside the penis there is a sponge-like space that has many blood vessels, which get filled with blood. Blood is then retained in that space and erection occurs. If blood vessels are affected, you will notice that erection weakens.

When does that happen? This usually happens when you’re living an unhealthy lifestyle, as when you smoke or eat excessively fatty meals, live a sedentary life or if you have uncontrolled diabetes. Diabetes is a chronic disease that you can live with normally, provided that you live a healthy lifestyle and stick to your medications. If you fail to do so, complications will occur, and one of these complications is erectile dysfunction.

If you have heart diseases because of poor circulation, hypertension or use antihypertensive drugs or histaminic drugs, all these will affect your circulation

Remember that drinking alcohol excessively can weaken your erections

When you consult your doctor regarding erection difficulties he will do several tests:

  • Blood test
  • Semen analysis
  • Urine analysis
  • Abdominal and pelvic ultrasound

One of these tests to check for erections, is done by wrapping a tape around the penis and leaving it overnight, so that your doctor would check for erections. It actually checks the morning erection. If erection occurs and it was shown on the tape as indicated by your doctor, then the cause of erectile dysfunction is probably psychological or due to exhaustion. However, if no erection occurs then there must be a pathological cause and should be dealt with. Your doctor will check for your blood pressure, blood glucose level, kidney functions and other tests. It is crucial to identify the cause of erectile dysfunction and treat it.

I’d like to stress here that erections can be absent for a while during periods of physical and/or mental exhaustion. But usually erections are regained after a while. If the problem persists or starts to affect your marriage then you must consult your doctor.

Treatment of erectile dysfunction mainly depends on changing your lifestyle to a healthy one. You should avoid smoking, sleep well, treat any psychological disorders, and if the problem persists I’d recommend that you consult your doctor. Your doctor will ask you about affecting psychological factors and you might need some medications, and some tests will be done as well.

In my opinion, living a healthy lifestyle will solve the problem in most cases. Avoid smoking and eating excessively fatty meals, and if you’re overweight, please reduce your weight. Do not feel ashamed or embarrassed to consult your doctor whenever you need help!

We wish you good health and all the best!

Alyaa Gad