Erectile Dysfunction | Fatigue
– Do you experience difficulties in achieving or maintaining full penile erection (Penile Shrinkage Surgery Learn More) when you are tired/ fatigued?
– Is it hard for you to get sexually stimulated when you are drunk, sleepy or over-worked?
– Is your erectile dysfunction (ED Causes Learn More) occasional and predictable?
If your answer to one or more questions listed above is positive, you probably don’t need a pharmacological remedy to manage your sexual dysfunction (Narcotics & Sexual Dysfunction Learn More).
Healthcare providers and sex therapists believe that fatigue is a fairly common cause of occasional erectile dysfunction (ED Treatment Learn More) that should be addressed properly to minimize the risk of developing other psychological (Trauma & ED Learn More) varieties of erectile dysfunction.
Patho-physiology of Fatigue Mediated ED
Data indicates that fatigue and stress (Stress & ED Learn More) is responsible for almost 15 to 20% of all erectile disorders.
Fortunately, fatigue mediated erectile dysfunction is temporary and respond very well to exercise, lifestyle modification and other related factors.
The pathogenesis involve
– Secretion of adrenaline/ epinephrine by the stimulation of autonomic nervous system
– Suppression of parasympathetic nervous system that is responsible for normal penile erection
– Lack of interest in intimacy because you are too tired
In some cases, organic diseases or neurological conditions that present with fatigue (like multiple sclerosis) can also lead to erectile dysfunction (1). Same is true for obstructive sleep apnea (2)
Identifying Erectile Dysfunction Due to Fatigue
It is very important to identify if ED is caused by physical causes or psychological causes. Healthcare professionals diagnose psychological ED after ruling out physical factors. There are several tests available that may help in making the diagnosis of erectile dysfunction (ED Screening Learn More).
These tests include
– Physical examination where anatomical features are observed for any abnormalities
– Blood tests to determine any obstructive vascular condition
– Neuronal function tests that include evaluation of penis to determine the parameters of dysfunction.
– Imaging ultrasound techniques are also used to map out blood vessels and allow direct visualization of vascular network in penis.
– In some cases prostaglandins are injected into the penis, this acts as a stimulator and produces erection, allowing an even closer analysis of function and anatomy of the organ.
To rule out vascular/ circulatory issues, healthcare providers also advice ‘nocturnal penile tumescence’ test. This involves determination of normal erection during sleep. A positive test indicates a psychological ED (for which sex experts conduct psychological tests to determine the primary cause).
Managing Erectile Dysfunction Due to Fatigue
– Men should take care of their health even more, if erectile dysfunction (ED Help Center Learn More) is due to excessive fatigue. Taking healthy diet and working out can increase self-confidence and result in a positive body image.
– Increasing the intake of high quality nutritious foods (Healthy Snacks Learn More) helps in building stamina.
– Adopt lifestyle modifications; for example, if you feel excessively fatigued due to long working hours, less time for relaxation or physical labor; you should re-evaluate your work life to bring positive changes in the personal and sexual life.
– Men, who face anxiety while having sex, should make a habit of self-encouragement. This involves talking to yourself and thinking about relaxing and calming things. Self-talk is helpful when a person keeps repeating positive thoughts to himself and denies any negative thoughts.
– Make sure to take ample sleep each night and improve coordination/ communication with your partner. If you are too tired/ fatigued, avoid engaging in intimate contact. It has been observed that ED due to fatigue may lead to anxiety and stress (that further affects the quality of sex life even in the non-fatigued state)
– If the cause of fatigue is an organic issue (like multiple sclerosis, sleep apnea, insomnia or other sleep disorders), it is highly recommended to seek medical help for resolution of ED.
Janardhan, V., & Bakshi, R. (2002). Quality of life in patients with multiple sclerosis: the impact of fatigue and depression. Journal of the neurological sciences, 205(1), 51-58.
Margel, D., Cohen, M., Livne, P. M., & Pillar, G. (2004). Severe, but not mild, obstructive sleep apnea syndrome is associated with erectile dysfunction. Urology, 63(3), 545-549.
When to Seek Medical Advice for ED?
IF ERECTILE DYSFUNCTION LASTS LONGER THAN 2 MONTHS OR IS A RECURRING PROBLEM, SEE YOUR DOCTOR FOR A PHYSICAL EXAM OR FOR A REFERRAL TO A DOCTOR WHO SPECIALIZES IN ERECTILE PROBLEMS. YOUR OWN DOCTOR OR A SPECIALIST CAN HELP TO DETERMINE THE UNDERLYING CAUSE OR CAUSES OF ERECTILE DYSFUNCTION AND GUIDE YOU TOWARDS FINDING THE RIGHT TYPE OF TREATMENT.
Although you might view erectile dysfunction as a personal or embarrassing problem, it’s important to seek treatment, especially if a physical cause might be developing. In many cases, erectile dysfunction can be successfully treated. Also, see your doctor if the therapy or medication prescribed to treat erectile dysfunction isn’t working for you. Don’t try to combine medications or therapies on your own or deviate from prescribed doses and do not your symptoms as they could be one of Erectile Dysfunction Causes.