Organic aspects of erectile dysfunction

Erectile dysfunctions constitute the most painful sexual disorders that can affect the life of a man. For most of men, the erection is the synonym of the capacity for practicing and enjoying sexual intercourse. Therefore, many men consider the loss of the capacity for having an erection as the end of their sexual life and a stigma for virility. In addition, the male role during the sexual intercourse is an active role which creates unavoidable responsibilities. Therefore any kind of erectile dysfunction has a great negative impact on the life of the individual that is being affected by such sexual disorder.

Organic causes for erectile dysfunction

Form all the patients who are affected by some kind of erectile dysfunction, among twenty to forty percent of the cases are caused by organic factors, though at this point it is important to point out that organic factors never come alone, they are always combined with some kind of psychological factors which also have to be identified.

As the age of the individual is increased, the organic problems acquire more importance, thus in the case of men with ages over the sixty years, the organic causes for sexual dysfunction overcome the psychological causes. Organic causes for erectile dysfunction include vascular problems as the most frequent cause. In such case, the penis is unable to reach the orgasm if the blood vessels are occluded since the required blood supply is not received by the structures of the penis.

However, there are other types of vascular problems which also prevent the individual from having or maintaining an erection, being the most important vascular problem the one that affects the venous system of the penis. In such case, the blood that is impulse through the arteries cannot be retained because of a failure on the veins and a bad communication between an artery and a vein (fistula) which produces a “theft” of the blood that should be sent to the corpora cavernosa of the penis.

 The phenomena is very similar to the case of a flat tire, the body keeps bumping blood to the penis, however such blood is redirected to the vein instead to the corpora cavernosa. Such situation constitutes a typical case of instable erection, when the penis experiences erections in an intermittent way. Such lesions can be identified on the cavernosometry and cavernosography studies, and they can be solved through the application of appropriate treatments.

The less frequent cases of arterial obstruction of the irrigation of blood to the penis can be identified by means of flowmetry and tensiometry studies through Doppler Effect which can be complemented with selective arteriography. The solution for such problems usually is of surgical type.

Organic causes for erectile dysfunction also involve neurological factors, which basically constitute alterations that affect nerves responsible for carrying the information between sexual organs and the central nervous system. Neurological disorders on peripheral nerves can be produced by diseases such as diabetes or by the intake of alcohol.

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