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Date of last update: 10/16/2017.

Forum Name: Male Sexual Disorders

Question: ED And Alternative Treatments

 JRoal - Sat Feb 25, 2006 2:24 pm

I am a 47 year old male. I am unable to attain an erection with a woman and when alone can only maintain half an erection. Viagra, Cialis and Levitra are all too expensive for me. The other methods are to evasive and embarrassing. Is there any proven alternative treatments for ED? I've heard that L-Arginine is suppose to work like Viagra. What about Garlic Extract? I've heard this may help as well. Hope someone can help.

 Dr. Tamer Fouad - Fri Apr 07, 2006 7:03 am

User avatar Hello,

Erectile dysfunction is defined as the persistent inability to attain or maintain penile erection sufficient for sexual intercourse.

An estimated 10 to 20 million American men have some degree of erectile dysfunction.

Causes of erectile dysfunction include aging, although it should be noted that one study revealed that up to one third of men above the age of 70 reported no erectile problems. Cigarette smoking and chronic alcoholism are known risk factors.

Chronic diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, hypertension, lipid disorders, liver or kidney failure and vascular disease are also known causes.

Endocrine diseases such as hypogonadism, hyperprolactinemia, hypo or hyperthyroidism all can cause erectile dysfunction.

Neurogenic causes of erectile dysfunction include spinal injury, herniated disc and multiple sclerosis.

Medications cause up to 25% of cases and include antidepressants among other drugs.

Trauma, surgery or injury to the pelvis, radiation to the pelvis, injury to the penis as well as other diseases of the penis (priapism, Peyronie's disease, anatomic abnormalities) can all lead to erectile problems.

Psychologic issues such as depression, anxiety are associated with erectile dysfunction in young males and manifest with an abrupt onset. The onset of ED maybe associated with an emotional event. also in psychogenic ED other sexual functions are normal. If a man regularly experiences a firm morning erection yet also has ED then it is much more likely that psychological factors contribute to his problem. Sometimes patients report that they have experienced similar episodes with spontaneous resolution. However, caution needs to be exercised as both organic and psychogenic factors may co-exist.

I am unable to comment on the efficacy of alternative drugs as a method of treatment, but the point of this post is to emphasize that you need to be assessed by a specialist to determine the proper course of treatment.

Best regards.

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