Running head: ERECTILE DYSFUNCTION AND THE USE OF VIAGRA
Erectile Dysfunction and the Use of Viagra
November 19, 2009
In the past, a man who was unable to achieve or maintain an erection for sexual intercourse was considered impotent. Medical professionals conducted research because this problem was very common among adult males of various ages. The medical professionals decided that it was no longer politically correct to call it impotence because it is a disease and has renamed it to erectile dysfunction. We will analyze some of the cause and treatment available to men and the effectiveness of Viagra for erectile dysfunction.
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Several factors increase the prevalence of erectile dysfunction: chronic illness such as diabetes and cardiovascular disease increase the prevalence as well as the use of drugs (illegal and prescription), alcohol and smoking.
Erectile dysfunction can be caused by many biological, psychological and social factors. Biological factors can be direct or indirect. Indirect factors are medical conditions that does not have a direct pathophysiological influence, but increase fatigue or diminish sexual arousal. For example, a man that is obese or suffering from asthma may experience shortness of breath during intercourse. This shortness of breath may cause him to worry or panic and thus, the penis may not remain firm. Direct factors such as diabetes and cardiovascular disease directly inhibit the vascular and neurological mechanisms needed to react sexually.
The abuse of alcohol can impair sexual functioning on a regular basis due to nerve, testicular, and liver damage. Drug abuse can also impair sexual functions; however, their effects are less studied. Research shows that 28%-43% of heroin users experience erectile dysfunction.
Anxiety has been linked to erectile dysfunction. Difficulties in a relationship can ruin erections in men. For example, studies have found that dysfunctional men were more likely than sexually functioning males to report more frequent arguments and deficits in the nonsexual aspects of their relationship (McCabe and Cobian, 1998). Anger toward a partner and lack of trust in a relationship can increase the risk of erectile dysfunction.
Rather than using the term impotence, which connoted a weak male, or being less-than-a man, health professionals has termed it a â€œmedicalâ€ issue and has renamed it erectile dysfunction. In comes Viagra: the new treatment option. Introduced by Pfizer in 1998, Viagra revolutionized the medical treatment of erectile dysfunction. Viagra works by enlarging penile blood vessels to increase blood flow, which in turn causes and erection. A man takes one pill about an hour before any sexual stimulation and if the chemistry is good, bada-boom, bada-bing, a man can actively engage in sexual intercourse. Despite public belief, Viagra does not cause an instant erection. It merely makes an erection in a man with erectile dysfunction possible. Erections still must be achieved the old way and they do not make the erection any bigger or better than the average male (Jones, J. S., 2003).
Viagra is a prescription medication and some doctors are concerned about the wrong type of people taking the pills. The desire to have great and instant erection among some men is so immense that they are willing to overlook the medical side effects to take the drug.
I conducted surveys on erectile dysfunction with several participants in a class I attend on the West Side. My first participant was a 67-year-old Caucasian male. He was born and raised in...