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Impotence and Heart Disease

The narrowing of your penile arteries

Erectile dysfunction and heart diseaseThe risk of developing impotence increases as you age. Research has suggested that this is because the blood vessels that carry blood to your penis can deteriorate as you age. As your penile blood vessels deteriorate, they become blocked and blood flow to your penis is restricted. This prevents an erection from occurring.

Impotence is an early sign of heart disease

Research has revealed that if you suffer from one set of blocked arteries, for example in your penile arteries which would cause impotence, your risk of having other blocked arteries is significantly increased. In many cases if you experience impotence, it can be an early warning sign that you are at risk of heart disease. It is estimated that you can become impotent for up to three years before you experience any sign of heart disease.

The reason your penile arteries show signs of blockage before your other arteries is because they are significantly narrower than the blood vessels in the rest of your body. For this reason it takes longer for your coronary arteries to become completely blocked and for you to develop atherosclerosis.

What can happen if all my arteries become blocked?

Atherosclerosis is when blood and oxygen cannot flow to your heart or brain properly due to a blockage caused by fatty build up and deposits (plaque). This plaque build-up can rupture and cause a blood clot to form. If the blood clot becomes large enough, it can completely block oxygen-rich blood from reaching your heart or brain.

If your heart is starved of oxygenated blood you are at risk of having a heart attack, which is when your heart becomes damaged and part of it can even die. Additionally, if your brain is starved of its oxygen rich blood supply, you are at extremely high risk of having a stroke which can cause your brain tissue to die. Both of these conditions can potentially be life threatening. Heart attacks are the biggest cause of death in the USA, and strokes are the third.

A study that examined 50 impotent men revealed that 40% of them were at an increased risk of angina and heart attack. Though none of the men had any visible symptoms of heart disease, six men were found to have blockages in all three major arteries in their heart; seven had two of their major arteries blocked and one artery was blocked in another seven of those tested.

Over 50% of men recovering from a heart attack experienced impotence before their attack. It is vital to consult your doctor if you are suffering from impotence. They will be able to help you treat your impotence and run tests to see if you are at risk of developing heart disease.

What can I do to prevent impotence and heart disease?

There are some precautions and life style changes you can make which can help to decrease your risk of developing impotence and heart disease. You should take steps to keep your blood pressure, weight, stress levels, cigarette intake and cholesterol down. You should also lead an active lifestyle as this encourages your heart and blood vessels to stay healthy.

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