New York, June 11: Erectile dysfunction (ED) indicates greater cardiovascular risk, regardless of other risk factors, such as cholesterol, smoking and high blood pressure, researchers warn. The findings suggest that ED is an important telltale sign that can help physicians gauge cardiovascular risk among middle-aged men. The researchers found that, among the participants of the study carried over four years, those who reported ED were twice as likely to experience heart attacks, cardiac arrests, sudden cardiac death and fatal or non-fatal strokes. “Our results reveal that erectile dysfunction is, in and of itself, a potent predictor of cardiovascular risk,” said co-author Michael Blaha, Associate Professor at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in Baltimore. According to the research, ED — defined as the inability to achieve or maintain an erection for satisfactory sexual intercourse — affects nearly 20 per cent of men over age 20.
Cardiovascular disease and ED share common risk factors, including obesity, hypertension, smoking, diabetes and metabolic syndrome — a condition marked by a cluster of features such as elevated blood sugar, hypertension and excess abdominal fat. (IANS)