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Sex Problems May Be Health Alert in Men

Posted by Jane Akre
Thursday, May 22, 2008 10:18 PM EST
Category: Major Medical, Protecting Your Family
Tags: FDA and Prescription Drugs, Men's Health, Erectile Dysfunction, Cholesterol Drugs

Men who have diabetes, erectile dysfunction may be an earning warning sign of heart disease.


IMAGE SOURCE:© iStockPhoto/ man getting massage/ author: Yuri_Arcurs 


Two new studies suggest that diabetic men who are having trouble sustaining an erection could be twice as likely as other diabetic men to develop heart problems.

Researches wanted to determine if erectile dysfunction (ED) on its own could be a trustworthy and independent warning sign that more severe health issues may be on the horizon.

High blood sugar levels of diabetes damage and inflame blood vessels causing them to clog and cut down on the blood supply to the heart and penis, according to the University of Hong Kong.

Previous studies indicate that the appearance of sexual dysfunction generally precedes the evolvement of heart symptoms in Type II diabetic men by about three years.  The study brought this information together in greater detail.

The study included 2,306 men, of which over a quarter already suffered from erectile dysfunction (ED). However, none of them had any obvious signs of heart disease or stroke.

Over the duration of 4 years, 123 men fell into one of the following categories – died from heart disease, suffered a heart attack, had chest pain linked to clogged arteries or ended up needing a heart bypass.

The study concluded men with ED were twice as likely to end up in this group compared to those with normal sexual performance.

The onset of erectile dysfunction should alert both patients and medical doctors to the future risk of coronary heart disease.

In another study, this one in Italy, 300 men who had diabetes and the early stages of heart disease were followed for four years. Those with ED at the beginning of the study were twice as likely to have a “major cardiac event” such as heart attack or stroke. 

Both studies are published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology. 

On the bright side, cholesterol-lowering drugs reduced the risk of heart incidents by one third.  Unfortunately, researchers say, many men with ED choose to ignore the symptoms rather than seek medical attention.  #

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