Difficulty Getting Or Maintaining An Erection

What Causes Erectile Dysfunction?

Erectile dysfunction can have various causes, ranging in severity from 'minor' to 'generally fatal'.  Finding the true cause means ruling out or confirming each possibility – in other words, diagnosis.

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  • check your overall health status
  • let The Analyst™ find what's wrong
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Diagnosis is usually a complex process due to the sheer number of possible causes and related symptoms.  In order to diagnose erectile dysfunction, we could:

  • Research the topic
  • Find a doctor with the time
  • Use a diagnostic computer system.
The process is the same, whichever method is used.

Step 1: List all Possible Causes

We begin by identifying the disease conditions which have "erectile dysfunction" as a symptom.  Here are seven possibilities:
  • Heart Disease
  • Male Menopause
  • Adrenal Fatigue
  • Dehydration
  • Cigarette Smoke Damage
  • Prostate Cancer
  • Low Testosterone

Step 2: Build a Symptom Checklist

We then identify all possible symptoms and risk factors of each possible cause, and check the ones that apply:
secondhand smoke exposure
very low fat/oil intake
having excess body fat
being very easily irritated
low energy/stamina
suspected adrenal insufficiency
constant thirst
frequent confusion/disorientation
low alcohol consumption
an average-stress lifestyle
interrupted urine stream
slight tongue swelling
... and more than 140 others

Step 3: Rule Out or Confirm each Possible Cause

A differential diagnosis of your symptoms and risk factors finds the likely cause of erectile dysfunction:
Cause Probability Status
Low Testosterone 92% Confirm
Dehydration 21% Unlikely
Male Menopause 16% Unlikely
Heart Disease 1% Ruled out
Cigarette Smoke Damage 0% Ruled out
Adrenal Fatigue 0% Ruled out
Prostate Cancer 0% Ruled out
* This is a simple example to illustrate the process

Arriving at a Correct Diagnosis

The Analyst™ is our online diagnosis tool that learns all about you through a straightforward process of multi-level questioning, providing diagnosis at the end.

In the Reproductive Symptoms section of the questionnaire, The Analyst™ will ask the following question about difficulty getting or maintaining an erection:
Do you have difficulty achieving or maintaining an erection?
Possible responses:
→ No / never / prefer not to say / don't know
→ Very rarely I will fail to maintain full erection
→ I occasionally fail to achieve/maintain erection
→ I usually/always fail to achieve/maintain erection
Based on your response to this question, which may indicate rare difficulty maintaining erection, some difficulty getting an erection or severe difficulty getting erections, The Analyst™ will consider possibilities such as:
Andropause/Male Menopause

Impotence or erectile dysfunction is one of the most common symptoms of andropause.

Low Male Testosterone Level

Without sufficient testosterone the penile muscles atrophy, with the result that insufficient blood is trapped for developing or maintaining an erection, which in turn leads to poor performance and the anxiety that follows.  One study found that low testosterone is a factor in 20% of men under 30 with erectile problems.

Prostate Cancer

A cancerous prostate gland may interfere with blood flow and nerve impulses to the penis.  That can cause ED; impotence can be one of the signs of prostate cancer.

Cigarette Smoke Damage

Men with high blood pressure who smoke are 26 times more likely to be impotent than non-smokers.  Even former smokers with high blood pressure (hypertension) are 11 times more likely to be impotent than non smokers.  [Study conducted by Dr. John Spangler, MD at Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center]

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