Diseases that can cause Erectile Dysfunction

Erectile dysfunction is characterized by a man’s inability to obtain and maintain an erection sufficient for sexual intercourse. There are many causes that may result in this disorder in men including diseases that interfere with blood flow to penile tissue. This is because for an erection to occur, the blood supply to the smooth muscles in the penis needs to be increased. When this does not happen, a man cannot attain an erection and if he does he cannot maintain it. These however are not the only diseases linked to erectile dysfunction.


This is a chronic endocrine disease that is commonly associated with destruction of nerves and blood vessels including those in the penis. If the nerves in the penile tissue are destroyed arousal is not felt making it impossible to get an erection. If the blood vessels are affected, the blood supply to the penis is not sufficient to maintain an erection no matter how aroused one is. According to research, this occurrence is four times more common in diabetics and the age of onset is likely to be 15years younger than in non-diabetics. Erectile dysfunction is common in people whose diabetes is not controlled.

Kidney disease

The kidney is a major endocrine organ that plays a major role in the secretion of hormones needed for the normal functioning of the body. The “male” hormone known as testosterone is especially affected by kidney disease. 70% of those suffering from chronic kidney disease have actually been shown to suffer from low testosterone levels. With these levels being low, men find it difficult to get aroused and subsequently attain an erection.

Vascular and cardiac-related Diseases

There are many diseases affecting the flow of blood to the different parts of the body. They include atherosclerosis in which the arteries harden due to plaque accumulation, low blood pressure where the pressure of blood flowing to body parts is too low and heart attack among other diseases. These diseases decrease the amount of blood flowing to the penis resulting in impotence. The drugs used to treat high blood pressure may also cause erectile dysfunction.

Rheumatoid arthritis

This causes systemic inflammation which may affect the blood vessels supplying the penis. When this happens, the blood flow to the organ is affected resulting in impotence. Taking Rheumatoid factor drugs has been shown to improve erectile dysfunction symptoms if it is the initial cause.


This is one of the commonest psychological causes of erectile dysfunction. When one is depressed lack of interest in sexual intercourse is common and hence no arousal. Without arousal it is difficult to attain an erection let alone maintain it. The relationship between ED and depression is two-way as impotence also causes depression in many men.