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The Link between Cardiovascular Disease and Erectile Dysfunction

Posted by floriza in Cardiology

Based on data from the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) Office of Surveillance and Epidemiology between 2000 and 2010, more than 2,000 men who took medications for erectile dysfunction died during the study period, often from cardiovascular issues. Researchers hoped to find out if erectile dysfunction medications had harmful side effects. Twenty-six thousand side effects were reported, including heart attacks and cardiac failure. The study was published in October 2011 in the Journal of Sexual Medicine.

Prior studies have already shown a link between erectile dysfunction and cardiology issues. A study published in 2005 in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) indicated that men with erectile dysfunction are 25 percent more likely to have heart disease. Another 2010 study published in the journal, Circulation, found that men who had both erectile dysfunction and heart disease had a 50 percent higher mortality rate than men who only had heart disease and not erectile dysfunction.

The researchers were quick to point out that it can be difficult to pinpoint whether the cardiac events were a result of drug side effects or a patient’s preexisting condition. The records did not include when the medications were taken relative to the time of the cardiac events. There was also no data to verify if the erectile dysfunction medications taken were genuine or counterfeit, as these drugs can be purchased online from questionable sources. Doctors caution patients against buying prescription drugs on the Internet, as they can be dangerous.

 

The researchers believe that the results of their study primarily show that men with erectile dysfunction should have a complete physical examination to determine if they have other conditions that they do not know about. They also recommend that all men over 30 receive a routine cardiology examination.

What are the Symptoms of Heart Disease?

The most common symptom of a heart attack in men is chest pain. Other symptoms are shortness of breath, sweating, dizziness, weakness, vomiting, indigestion, and fatigue.

What about heart failure? Despite its name, heart failure is not always life-threatening. It does mean, however, that the heart is not functioning properly, and it is the number one cause of hospitalization in people over the age of 65. Symptoms of heart failure include chronic shortness of breath, a cough that produces blood or white mucous, heart palpitations, and/or inflammation of the feet, ankles, legs, and/or stomach.

Medical facilities that offer cardiology in New Jersey and other locations can determine the health of your heart and whether you are at risk of cardiovascular disease.

What Causes Erectile Dysfunction?

Besides heart disease, other potential causes of erectile dysfunction are diabetes, obesity, Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, alcoholism, and prostate cancer.

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