Erectile dysfunction – Is there hope?
My wife and I have been married for over 40 years and we are both in our sixties. We have had a very active sex life. However over the last two years, we have been suffering from erectile dysfunction (ED) (I am including my wife because it also adversely affects her.)
Here is some additional background. I have the following medical conditions:
1. Sleep apnea – controlled with a CPAP for the last 15 years.
2. Hypertension – controlled with medications, some of which have been known to be implicated with ED.
3. Overweight – Yes, I know that losing weight could help.
4. Pre-diabetic – the blood tests show that my blood sugar levels is slightly above normal range, and yes, maybe losing some weight and exercising more could possibly reverse it.
5. Testosterone level – 10 years ago, a blood test showed that I was on the low end what is considered “normal”, whatever that means.
I think that many men in the past who have suffered from this, don’t talk about it and just suck it up. They accept it as something that comes with old age. I am not ready to give up.
Okay, my questions are “Is there hope for a reversal of my condition?” and “What should I pursue with my doctor?”
I personally believe that a great place for you to start would be a bhrt doctor. It sounds to me like low testosterone is definitely a contributing factor, if not the main factor. Defy Medical is telemedicine and we have had a great experience with them.
The overweight/hypertension/pre-diabetic are all related and may contribute to the ED (as well as the medication for the hypertension). I’d start there, not because of the ED, but because general health is so important. Yes, testosterone could play into that, but you can begin getting healthier even before the testosterone evaluation is in. Exercise and healthy eating should not be underestimated, and they can help the mental confidence as well.
Speaking from our personal experience…..
Low testosterone can negatively affect, or the opposite of it and having your optimal T levels can positively affect, all those extra issues as well. My husband’s glucose was borderline diabetic (100) when he started, after being on TRT for 90 days, it dropped well into normal (upper-70s) with ZERO other changes in his diet or lifestyle. He also leaned out and gained muscle… which he was exercising and weightlifting before and after, but he didn’t make any changes in his normal routine of exercise. By increasing your muscle index and decreasing the fat index affects your life expectancy. There’s a positive impact on your cholesterol and your heart. And this isn’t mentioning the positive mental, emotional (many suffer from depression or lack of motivation) and sexual changes.
@Oldtimer, just be aware, there’s a high likelihood if you go to any regular physician other than someone who really knows hormones (a bhrt doctor), you will not get correct information, correct tests, correct interpretation of blood results, or even up to date information or scientific data on hormones. Just speaking from personal experience, and hearing other’s testimonies, first, it would be good for you to be well educated on TRT (excelmale’s website is a good source of information) so that you can determine if your doctor is “in the know” on what he is dealing with or talking about (I was amazed at how ignorant the doctor’s we visited were, one was a GP and the other a urologist), and secondly, you can skip a lot of frustration and save a lot of time and money by just going directly to someone who knows hormones. The con to bhrt doctor’s, they typically won’t take insurance. Defy Medical does free consultations, it wouldn’t hurt setting one up and sharing everything you shared here, and see if they believe they can help you or if you need to work on other health issues first.
I’d look at the overweight/hypertension/pre-diabetes part of the equation first. Think about the lifestyle changes you can make to improve your diet and get more active. This will likely help the sleep apnoea and is likely to have a beneficial effect on erectile dysfunction.
Thinking about this a bit more, I wouldn’t necessarily leap to the conclusion that it’s low testosterone. I say this because you say that you were on the low end of normal 10 years ago, but have only been having erectile dysfunction for 2 years. We haven’t got any data on what your testosterone levels have been like over the last 10 years, so whilst it can’t be ruled out, there isn’t enough evidence to say that the two are definitely related.
However, we do know that you’re taking medication for hypertension which can cause erectile problems as a side effect. We also know that you’re overweight and pre-diabetic, both of which will make erectile problems worse, even if they’re not the underlying cause.
If it was me, I’d get your testosterone checked (and also get a PSA test whilst you’re there, because lots of men in their 60s have prostate cancer, and if you detect it early there’s a better chance of both curing it and preserving sexual function), but also focus on trying to eat more healthily and get more active because that will help anyway, and will likely give you a longer healthy life expectancy.