What causes erectile dysfunction (ED)

The cause or causes can be medical or psychological (mental) or a combination of both.

Medical: ED can be the result testosterone deficiency, when a man’s level of total or active testosterone becomes too low (deficient), or their body is unable to make effective use of the testosterone in the blood (testosterone resistant). Erectile dysfunction, together with loss of sex drive, are common and distressing features of testosterone deficiency.

ED can also be the result of narrowing of the blood vessels going to and in the penis. This can be due e.g. to cardiovascular disease or diabetes. ED can provide an important early warning marker for underlying medical issues, enabling preventive action to be taken to deal with any associated lifestyle or other risk factors. ED can also be caused by surgery or injury to the penis.

Psychological: where problems with erections only happen in certain situations or with particular sexual partners, it is likely that the cause is psychological and connected to stress, anxiety, depression or relationship issues.

How is erectile dysfunction diagnosed and treated at the centre?