Learn about erectile dysfunction, its causes and advanced treatments. Then, find a solution that works for you.

Erectile Dysfunction- Causes and Treatment

Erectile Dysfunction (ED) is the inability to develop or maintain an erection of the penis during sexual performance.

ED may result from organic or psychological causes.

Organic Causes

The organic causes of ED are more common in older men. They include:

  • Vascular – atherosclerosis, peripheral arterial disease
  • Neurologic – multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease, stroke, spinal cord injury
  • Endocrine – hypogonadism, prolactinoma
  • Metabolic – diabetes mellitus, obesity

Psychological Causes

Psychological causes of ED are more common in younger men. They include:

  • Performance anxiety – fear of failure to achieve or maintain an erection
  • Relationship problems – lack of sexual desire or conflict with a sexual partner
  • Depression


The treatment of ED depends on the underlying cause.

If the cause is organic, treatment may include:

  • Lifestyle changes – weight loss, exercise, reduction of alcohol intake, smoking cessation
  • Medications – phosphodiesterase inhibitors, testosterone replacement therapy
  • Surgery – penile implants

If the cause is psychological, treatment may include:

  • Psychotherapy – individual, couple or family counseling
  • Medications – antidepressants, anti-anxiety drugs