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• Sexual Function • Bladder • Infertility •
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E-mail this Impotence Confronting Erectile Dysfunction as a Team
Experts agree that good communication is the foundation for an enduring relationship. However, when couples encounter sexual difficulties, communication in the best of relationships can become strained or break down entirely.
Erectile dysfunction may divide and distance couples, often causing conflict and emotional pain. Couples may intentionally, or unintentionally ignore or deny the condition, thus delaying treatment. Fortunately, many sexual difficulties can be improved or resolved through open communication and a mutual commitment to learn about the condition and treatment options.
The first step in addressing erectile dysfunction, as partners, is to understand the definition of the condition and acknowledge its existence. In 1992, the National Institutes of Health defined erectile dysfunction as the inability to sustain or achieve an erection. This definition is more precise than impotence, a term that some associate with being sterile or lacking strength, vigor or power.
Overcoming erectile dysfunction is best achieved when a man and his partner openly communicate, continue to demonstrate love and affection and have a mutual desire to carry through with treatment options.
This on-line brochure has been developed to help couples learn more about erectile dysfunction and the treatment options available. It is hoped this brochure will promote dialogue and encourage couples to seek a knowledgeable and caring physician to discuss treatment options for this condition.
Sexual Function Health Council
American Foundation for Urologic Disease
What Is Erectile Dysfunction?
Erectile Dysfunction (ED), also known as impotence, is the inability to achieve or to sustain an erection adequate for sexual intercourse. ED is a common, treatable condition affecting an estimated 18 million men in the United States alone. Yet, data suggest that less than 10 percent of affected men actually receive treatment. The small number who receive treatment is thought to be related to the reluctance of many men to discuss the subject with their doctor. In addition, some physicians are not comfortable addressing the topic with their patients.
What Causes Erectile Dysfunction?
Most men experience occasional erectile failures at some time during their lives, usually as a result of fatigue, temporary stress or excessive alcohol consumption. Temporary loss of erectile capability is not something to worry about, However, when the condition persists or interferes with a man’s normal sexual activity, medical advice should be sought.
Until recently, many in the health care profession believed erectile dysfunction was caused by mental or emotional conflicts. Patients were often told, “It’s all in your head.” Today, experts believe that up to 70 percent of all ED cases may be due to physical conditions, with psychological factors accounting for the remaining 30 percent. In many cases, however, there are both psychological and physical reasons for the condition.
Men with ED of a physical origin often experience a gradual onset of symptoms. Physical causes of ED include:
blockage in the arteries
diabetes
neurological disorders
disease of the erectile tissue of the penis
pelvic surgery and/or trauma
side effects of medications
chronic disease (such as kidney or liver failure)
hormonal abnormalities
alcoholism and drug abuse
heavy smoking
Men who experience a sudden loss of erectile capability often have a psychological origin to their condition. Just as an erection can result from thinking about sex, negative thoughts can prevent an erection from occurring. Typically, patients whose ED is primarily psychological in nature continue to have erections while they sleep or when they get up in the morning.
Psychological causes of impotence include:
stress and anxiety from work or home
worry about poor sexual performance
marital discord
unresolved sexual orientation
depression
Whether a man’s erectile dysfunction is caused by physical or psychological factors, or a combination of the two, it may become a source of mental, emotional and physical stress. In addition, ED may also be a symptom of more serious conditions such as heart disease or diabetes.
Which Doctors Treat ED?
Doctors most qualified to treat ED are those who regularly diagnose and treat the condition and who stay up-to-date on the latest ED research and treatments. As a group, urologists are the most knowledgeable about ED. Many psychiatrists and psychologists also treat the condition. Whoever is consulted should be both knowledgeable about the condition and have an understanding of its potential impact on the man and his partner. It is also important that medical professionals discuss the pros and cons of all treatment options with their patients.
Can Someone Be too Old for Treatment?
Attitude, not age, is the biggest barrier in treating erectile dysfunction. Some men who experience difficulty producing an erection may see the condition as a natural, unchangeable part of aging. Instead of seeking treatment, many men resign themselves to the condition by making excuses, such as: “I’m too old,” or “I’m not interested anymore” or “I have better things to do.” Fortunately, more and more information is becoming available to help men of any age realize that treatment options are available to treat ED.
Should Couples Seek Treatment Together?
Some men prefer to deal with their erectile dysfunction with no help or assistance from their partner; some even seek medical advice and treatment without their partner’s knowledge. Yet, most doctors acknowledge that a couple’s chances for a mutually beneficial approach to treating ED are much better when they work together. This partnership can begin with a visit to the physician.
What Happens during the First Visit?
The first visit with the doctor often involves a complete exam. This exam will probably include a detailed medical and sexual history, followed by a physical examination and basic laboratory tests. The results of the exam will help the doctor determine the cause and extent of the condition and suggest possible treatment options. Whatever treatment is selected, the partner can play an important supporting role for the patient.
How Are Men Affected by ED?
The ability to function sexually helps define a man’s role in the world, thus shaping his identity. It’s no wonder, then, that the loss of erectile capability can have a profound effect on a man.
Many men with ED suffer emotionally, often in silence. They may say to themselves: “If I can’t have normal sex with my partner, I’m a failure as a man and a lover.” Or they may worry, “Will she will leave me if I don’t satisfy her?” Such concerns may contribute to feelings of anxiety, depression, grief, embarrassment, anger, shame and frustration.
How Are Partners Affected by ED?
Because of the emotional pain associated with ED, it’s common for men to make excuses or avoid sexual situations with their partners in an effort to forget about the condition. Whether intentional or unintentional, these actions can make a woman feel inadequate within the relationship, often resulting in rejection, loneliness and depression.
Some women may fear they are no longer attractive to their partner, or that his attitude is the result of something she may have done. Others may worry: “Is something wrong with our relationship?” Or, “Is he having an affair?” Thus, a man’s failure to communicate his condition may contribute to feelings of anxiety or depression in his partner, or lead her to express anger and frustration.
How Can Couples Work Together?
In order to appropriately treat ED and strengthen a healthy and nurturing relationship, couples need to communicate openly and honestly with each other. Most importantly, couples need to confront any concerns they may have about ED by discussing their feelings and reassuring each other that they still care. Couples need to maintain this communication throughout the treatment process.
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Overview
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Bladder
   •
Infertility
   •
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What’s New    •
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Apply here
   •
Scholars
   •
Funding
   •
News
   •
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Cancer comparison
   •
Initiatives
   •
TRU Act    •
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   •
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   •
Dads’ Day 5k    •
Introduction
   •
Board of Directors
   •
AUA relationship    •
urologyhealth.org
   •
auanet.org
   •
Other Links
   •
Links Policy Quicklink Select a Disease
Prostate

Prostate Cancer

Enlarged Prostate

Prostatitis
——————–
Kidney
Health

Kidney Cancer

Kidney Stones

Kidney Failure
——————–
Bladder

Incontinence

Bladder Cancer

Inerstitial Cystitis …the
prevention and cure of urologic diseases through the
expansion of research, education, and patient advocacy. DISEASES AND CONDITIONS Overview • Prostate • Kidney
• Sexual Function • Bladder • Infertility •
Councils Share your story
Search for this
Print this
E-mail this Impotence Confronting Erectile Dysfunction as a Team
Experts agree that good communication is the foundation for an enduring relationship. However, when couples encounter sexual difficulties, communication in the best of relationships can become strained or break down entirely.
Erectile dysfunction may divide and distance couples, often causing conflict and emotional pain. Couples may intentionally, or unintentionally ignore or deny the condition, thus delaying treatment. Fortunately, many sexual difficulties can be improved or resolved through open communication and a mutual commitment to learn about the condition and treatment options.
The first step in addressing erectile dysfunction, as partners, is to understand the definition of the condition and acknowledge its existence. In 1992, the National Institutes of Health defined erectile dysfunction as the inability to sustain or achieve an erection. This definition is more precise than impotence, a term that some associate with being sterile or lacking strength, vigor or power.
Overcoming erectile dysfunction is best achieved when a man and his partner openly communicate, continue to demonstrate love and affection and have a mutual desire to carry through with treatment options.
This on-line brochure has been developed to help couples learn more about erectile dysfunction and the treatment options available. It is hoped this brochure will promote dialogue and encourage couples to seek a knowledgeable and caring physician to discuss treatment options for this condition.
Sexual Function Health Council
American Foundation for Urologic Disease
What Is Erectile Dysfunction?
Erectile Dysfunction (ED), also known as impotence, is the inability to achieve or to sustain an erection adequate for sexual intercourse. ED is a common, treatable condition affecting an estimated 18 million men in the United States alone. Yet, data suggest that less than 10 percent of affected men actually receive treatment. The small number who receive treatment is thought to be related to the reluctance of many men to discuss the subject with their doctor. In addition, some physicians are not comfortable addressing the topic with their patients.
What Causes Erectile Dysfunction?
Most men experience occasional erectile failures at some time during their lives, usually as a result of fatigue, temporary stress or excessive alcohol consumption. Temporary loss of erectile capability is not something to worry about, However, when the condition persists or interferes with a man’s normal sexual activity, medical advice should be sought.
Until recently, many in the health care profession believed erectile dysfunction was caused by mental or emotional conflicts. Patients were often told, “It’s all in your head.” Today, experts believe that up to 70 percent of all ED cases may be due to physical conditions, with psychological factors accounting for the remaining 30 percent. In many cases, however, there are both psychological and physical reasons for the condition.
Men with ED of a physical origin often experience a gradual onset of symptoms. Physical causes of ED include:
blockage in the arteries
diabetes
neurological disorders
disease of the erectile tissue of the penis
pelvic surgery and/or trauma
side effects of medications
chronic disease (such as kidney or liver failure)
hormonal abnormalities
alcoholism and drug abuse
heavy smoking
Men who experience a sudden loss of erectile capability often have a psychological origin to their condition. Just as an erection can result from thinking about sex, negative thoughts can prevent an erection from occurring. Typically, patients whose ED is primarily psychological in nature continue to have erections while they sleep or when they get up in the morning.
Psychological causes of impotence include:
stress and anxiety from work or home
worry about poor sexual performance
marital discord
unresolved sexual orientation
depression
Whether a man’s erectile dysfunction is caused by physical or psychological factors, or a combination of the two, it may become a source of mental, emotional and physical stress. In addition, ED may also be a symptom of more serious conditions such as heart disease or diabetes.
Which Doctors Treat ED?
Doctors most qualified to treat ED are those who regularly diagnose and treat the condition and who stay up-to-date on the latest ED research and treatments. As a group, urologists are the most knowledgeable about ED. Many psychiatrists and psychologists also treat the condition. Whoever is consulted should be both knowledgeable about the condition and have an understanding of its potential impact on the man and his partner. It is also important that medical professionals discuss the pros and cons of all treatment options with their patients.
Can Someone Be too Old for Treatment?
Attitude, not age, is the biggest barrier in treating erectile dysfunction. Some men who experience difficulty producing an erection may see the condition as a natural, unchangeable part of aging. Instead of seeking treatment, many men resign themselves to the condition by making excuses, such as: “I’m too old,” or “I’m not interested anymore” or “I have better things to do.” Fortunately, more and more information is becoming available to help men of any age realize that treatment options are available to treat ED.
Should Couples Seek Treatment Together?
Some men prefer to deal with their erectile dysfunction with no help or assistance from their partner; some even seek medical advice and treatment without their partner’s knowledge. Yet, most doctors acknowledge that a couple’s chances for a mutually beneficial approach to treating ED are much better when they work together. This partnership can begin with a visit to the physician.
What Happens during the First Visit?
The first visit with the doctor often involves a complete exam. This exam will probably include a detailed medical and sexual history, followed by a physical examination and basic laboratory tests. The results of the exam will help the doctor determine the cause and extent of the condition and suggest possible treatment options. Whatever treatment is selected, the partner can play an important supporting role for the patient.
How Are Men Affected by ED?
The ability to function sexually helps define a man’s role in the world, thus shaping his identity. It’s no wonder, then, that the loss of erectile capability can have a profound effect on a man.
Many men with ED suffer emotionally, often in silence. They may say to themselves: “If I can’t have normal sex with my partner, I’m a failure as a man and a lover.” Or they may worry, “Will she will leave me if I don’t satisfy her?” Such concerns may contribute to feelings of anxiety, depression, grief, embarrassment, anger, shame and frustration.
How Are Partners Affected by ED?
Because of the emotional pain associated with ED, it’s common for men to make excuses or avoid sexual situations with their partners in an effort to forget about the condition. Whether intentional or unintentional, these actions can make a woman feel inadequate within the relationship, often resulting in rejection, loneliness and depression.
Some women may fear they are no longer attractive to their partner, or that his attitude is the result of something she may have done. Others may worry: “Is something wrong with our relationship?” Or, “Is he having an affair?” Thus, a man’s failure to communicate his condition may contribute to feelings of anxiety or depression in his partner, or lead her to express anger and frustration.
How Can Couples Work Together?
In order to appropriately treat ED and strengthen a healthy and nurturing relationship, couples need to communicate openly and honestly with each other. Most importantly, couples need to confront any concerns they may have about ED by discussing their feelings and reassuring each other that they still care. Couples need to maintain this communication throughout the treatment process.
page 1    page 2    •
Overview
   •
Prostate
   •
Kidney
   •
Sexual function
   •
Bladder
   •
Infertility
   •
Pediatric
   •
Health councils
   •
What’s New    •
Overview
   •
Apply here
   •
Scholars
   •
Funding
   •
News
   •
Meetings    •
Cancer comparison
   •
Initiatives
   •
TRU Act    •
Patient conference
   •
AUA conference
   •
Dads’ Day 5k    •
Introduction
   •
Board of Directors
   •
AUA relationship    •
urologyhealth.org
   •
auanet.org
   •
Other Links
   •
Links Policy Quicklink Select a Disease
Prostate

Prostate Cancer

Enlarged Prostate

Prostatitis
——————–
Kidney
Health

Kidney Cancer

Kidney Stones

Kidney Failure
——————–
Bladder

Incontinence

Bladder Cancer

Inerstitial Cystitis …the
prevention and cure of urologic diseases through the
expansion of research, education, and patient advocacy. …the
prevention and cure of urologic diseases through the
expansion of research, education, and patient advocacy. DISEASES AND CONDITIONS Overview • Prostate • Kidney
• Sexual Function • Bladder • Infertility •
Councils Share your story
Search for this
Print this
E-mail this Impotence Confronting Erectile Dysfunction as a Team
Experts agree that good communication is the foundation for an enduring relationship. However, when couples encounter sexual difficulties, communication in the best of relationships can become strained or break down entirely.
Erectile dysfunction may divide and distance couples, often causing conflict and emotional pain. Couples may intentionally, or unintentionally ignore or deny the condition, thus delaying treatment. Fortunately, many sexual difficulties can be improved or resolved through open communication and a mutual commitment to learn about the condition and treatment options.
The first step in addressing erectile dysfunction, as partners, is to understand the definition of the condition and acknowledge its existence. In 1992, the National Institutes of Health defined erectile dysfunction as the inability to sustain or achieve an erection. This definition is more precise than impotence, a term that some associate with being sterile or lacking strength, vigor or power.
Overcoming erectile dysfunction is best achieved when a man and his partner openly communicate, continue to demonstrate love and affection and have a mutual desire to carry through with treatment options.
This on-line brochure has been developed to help couples learn more about erectile dysfunction and the treatment options available. It is hoped this brochure will promote dialogue and encourage couples to seek a knowledgeable and caring physician to discuss treatment options for this condition.
Sexual Function Health Council
American Foundation for Urologic Disease
What Is Erectile Dysfunction?
Erectile Dysfunction (ED), also known as impotence, is the inability to achieve or to sustain an erection adequate for sexual intercourse. ED is a common, treatable condition affecting an estimated 18 million men in the United States alone. Yet, data suggest that less than 10 percent of affected men actually receive treatment. The small number who receive treatment is thought to be related to the reluctance of many men to discuss the subject with their doctor. In addition, some physicians are not comfortable addressing the topic with their patients.
What Causes Erectile Dysfunction?
Most men experience occasional erectile failures at some time during their lives, usually as a result of fatigue, temporary stress or excessive alcohol consumption. Temporary loss of erectile capability is not something to worry about, However, when the condition persists or interferes with a man’s normal sexual activity, medical advice should be sought.
Until recently, many in the health care profession believed erectile dysfunction was caused by mental or emotional conflicts. Patients were often told, “It’s all in your head.” Today, experts believe that up to 70 percent of all ED cases may be due to physical conditions, with psychological factors accounting for the remaining 30 percent. In many cases, however, there are both psychological and physical reasons for the condition.
Men with ED of a physical origin often experience a gradual onset of symptoms. Physical causes of ED include:
blockage in the arteries
diabetes
neurological disorders
disease of the erectile tissue of the penis
pelvic surgery and/or trauma
side effects of medications
chronic disease (such as kidney or liver failure)
hormonal abnormalities
alcoholism and drug abuse
heavy smoking
Men who experience a sudden loss of erectile capability often have a psychological origin to their condition. Just as an erection can result from thinking about sex, negative thoughts can prevent an erection from occurring. Typically, patients whose ED is primarily psychological in nature continue to have erections while they sleep or when they get up in the morning.
Psychological causes of impotence include:
stress and anxiety from work or home
worry about poor sexual performance
marital discord
unresolved sexual orientation
depression
Whether a man’s erectile dysfunction is caused by physical or psychological factors, or a combination of the two, it may become a source of mental, emotional and physical stress. In addition, ED may also be a symptom of more serious conditions such as heart disease or diabetes.
Which Doctors Treat ED?
Doctors most qualified to treat ED are those who regularly diagnose and treat the condition and who stay up-to-date on the latest ED research and treatments. As a group, urologists are the most knowledgeable about ED. Many psychiatrists and psychologists also treat the condition. Whoever is consulted should be both knowledgeable about the condition and have an understanding of its potential impact on the man and his partner. It is also important that medical professionals discuss the pros and cons of all treatment options with their patients.
Can Someone Be too Old for Treatment?
Attitude, not age, is the biggest barrier in treating erectile dysfunction. Some men who experience difficulty producing an erection may see the condition as a natural, unchangeable part of aging. Instead of seeking treatment, many men resign themselves to the condition by making excuses, such as: “I’m too old,” or “I’m not interested anymore” or “I have better things to do.” Fortunately, more and more information is becoming available to help men of any age realize that treatment options are available to treat ED.
Should Couples Seek Treatment Together?
Some men prefer to deal with their erectile dysfunction with no help or assistance from their partner; some even seek medical advice and treatment without their partner’s knowledge. Yet, most doctors acknowledge that a couple’s chances for a mutually beneficial approach to treating ED are much better when they work together. This partnership can begin with a visit to the physician.
What Happens during the First Visit?
The first visit with the doctor often involves a complete exam. This exam will probably include a detailed medical and sexual history, followed by a physical examination and basic laboratory tests. The results of the exam will help the doctor determine the cause and extent of the condition and suggest possible treatment options. Whatever treatment is selected, the partner can play an important supporting role for the patient.
How Are Men Affected by ED?
The ability to function sexually helps define a man’s role in the world, thus shaping his identity. It’s no wonder, then, that the loss of erectile capability can have a profound effect on a man.
Many men with ED suffer emotionally, often in silence. They may say to themselves: “If I can’t have normal sex with my partner, I’m a failure as a man and a lover.” Or they may worry, “Will she will leave me if I don’t satisfy her?” Such concerns may contribute to feelings of anxiety, depression, grief, embarrassment, anger, shame and frustration.
How Are Partners Affected by ED?
Because of the emotional pain associated with ED, it’s common for men to make excuses or avoid sexual situations with their partners in an effort to forget about the condition. Whether intentional or unintentional, these actions can make a woman feel inadequate within the relationship, often resulting in rejection, loneliness and depression.
Some women may fear they are no longer attractive to their partner, or that his attitude is the result of something she may have done. Others may worry: “Is something wrong with our relationship?” Or, “Is he having an affair?” Thus, a man’s failure to communicate his condition may contribute to feelings of anxiety or depression in his partner, or lead her to express anger and frustration.
How Can Couples Work Together?
In order to appropriately treat ED and strengthen a healthy and nurturing relationship, couples need to communicate openly and honestly with each other. Most importantly, couples need to confront any concerns they may have about ED by discussing their feelings and reassuring each other that they still care. Couples need to maintain this communication throughout the treatment process.
page 1    page 2 Impotence Confronting Erectile Dysfunction as a TeamExperts agree that good communication is the foundation for an enduring relationship. However, when couples encounter sexual difficulties, communication in the best of relationships can become strained or break down entirely.
Erectile dysfunction may divide and distance couples, often causing conflict and emotional pain. Couples may intentionally, or unintentionally ignore or deny the condition, thus delaying treatment. Fortunately, many sexual difficulties can be improved or resolved through open communication and a mutual commitment to learn about the condition and treatment options.
The first step in addressing erectile dysfunction, as partners, is to understand the definition of the condition and acknowledge its existence. In 1992, the National Institutes of Health defined erectile dysfunction as the inability to sustain or achieve an erection. This definition is more precise than impotence, a term that some associate with being sterile or lacking strength, vigor or power.
Overcoming erectile dysfunction is best achieved when a man and his partner openly communicate, continue to demonstrate love and affection and have a mutual desire to carry through with treatment options.
This on-line brochure has been developed to help couples learn more about erectile dysfunction and the treatment options available. It is hoped this brochure wi…