Erectile dysfunction results due to reduced blood flow to the penis or inability of the penile muscles to relax during sexual activity. There could be various underlying causes for erection problems, including diabetes and heart problems. Inability to get and maintain erection is the primary symptom noted. The choice of treatment is based on the underlying cause, and includes medications, therapies such as self-injections and exercises, and surgical implants.


Maintaining erection at times may be common. But during erectile dysfunction the symptoms are persistent and include:

  • Trouble getting and maintaining erection
  • Reduced sexual activity or desire


Treatment options depend on the severity and underlying cause for erectile dysfunction.


  • Oral medications: To enhance the effects of nitric oxide involved in relaxing the penile muscles.
    Sildenafil Tadalafil
  • Penile self-injections: Injecting medications into the base or sides of the penis.
    Papaverine Alprostadil
  • Alprostadil intraurethral (Muse) therapy: A tiny alprostadil suppository is placed inside the penis.

Self care

  • Quit smoking and alcohol.
  • Lose weight.
  • Talk to your partner regarding your condition.
  • Learn to manage stress.

Medical procedures: Penile implants

Therapies: Hormone therapy · Vacuum erection · Psychotherapy


  • Erectile dysfunction occurs when the blood flow to the penis is decreased or the muscles of the penis do not relax
  • This could be the result of an underlying physical or psychological condition, or both

Physical Conditions:

  • Trauma or injury to the penis or spinal cord
  • Diseases of the penis
  • Diseases of the heart or blood vessel, e. g. atherosclerosis, myocardial infarction
  • Obesity
  • High cholesterol
  • High blood pressure
  • Diabetes
  • Metabolic syndrome – a condition having high blood pressure, high insulin and cholesterol levels
  • Neurological conditions such as Parkinson’s disease, Multiple sclerosis
  • Certain medications, e. g. antidepressants, antihistamines
  • Tobacco and alcohol use
  • Sleep disorders
  • Treatments for organs in pelvic area

Psychological Conditions:

  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Stress