Erectile Dysfunction (ED): Frequently Asked Questions – Part 2
Though erectile dysfunction (ED) is one of the most common sexual problems among men, there still seems to be many questions and misconceptions regarding it. If you’re experiencing performance issues and are concerned that ED may be the issue you’re dealing with, part two of this blog will continue to shed some light on the most frequently asked questions about erectile dysfunction.
How Is Erectile Dysfunction Diagnosed?
In making a diagnosis of erectile dysfunction (ED), your doctor will start by taking a detailed medical and psychosexual history and conducting a thorough physical examination. If possible, interviewing your partner also is very helpful in obtaining an accurate history, planning treatment and a successful outcome.
ED is often associated with various other medical conditions, such as diabetes, coronary artery disease, hypertension, hyperlipidemia, spinal cord compression and pituitary tumors. Therefore, your doctor may conduct a variety of laboratory tests in order to determine the exact cause of your ED.
What Treatments Are Available For Erectile Dysfunction?
Your doctor will first make sure that you’re getting the right treatment for any health conditions that could be causing or worsening your erectile dysfunction. Depending on the cause and severity of your erectile dysfunction and any underlying health conditions, you might have various treatment options. Your doctor can explain the risks and benefits of each treatment and will take your preferences into consideration.
The most common medicines prescribed to treat ED are called PDE5-inhibitors, which you may have heard of as sildenafil (Viagra), Tadalafil (Cialis) and Vardenafil (Levitra). These medications facilitate the flow of blood to the penis and for most men these are very effective. However if medications fail to address the issue there are several other lesser used treatments such as urethral suppositories, injections, vacuum pumps or surgery (penile implants).
Are There Alternative Treatments?
There are a number of herbs and supplements for use in men with ED. However, the overall quality of the studies evaluating these treatments has been low. Therefore, evidence for the effectiveness and safety of these therapies is limited. Many of these therapies have known risks, and there’s a possibility that other risks are yet to be discovered. Consult your doctor and use caution when considering alternative treatment for ED.
How Can I Prevent Erectile Dysfunction?
You can prevent many of the causes of ED by making healthy lifestyle choices. Following a healthy diet may help to prevent ED. Quitting smoking and becoming more physically active are also important ways to prevent ED. If you haven’t been active in quite some time, talk with your doctor before engaging in new physical activities.
Will Insurance Cover Treatment For Erectile Dysfunction?
Insurance coverage of erectile dysfunction depends upon the type of treatment prescribed by your doctor. If there is a documented medical condition that is shown to be a cause of ED, insurance will usually cover at least a portion of the expense. Ask your insurance provider if the treatment you are considering will be covered.