Erectile dysfunction (ED, formerly known as Impotence) is defined as the consistent inability to obtain or maintain an erection for satisfactory sexual relations.
ED can be classified as organic, psychogenic or mixed. Organic ED is due to physical defects and can be further sub-classified. Psychogenic ED is secondary to psychological factors that are thought to inhibit a man’s ability to achieve an erection because of specific stressors. Often times ED has a mixed component of both organic and psychogenic etiologies.
ED is a common concern for men and their partners, can cause significant depression and anxiety, and can greatly impact quality of life. ED can also lead to a lower level of physical and emotional intimacy resulting in a lower level of satisfaction with in a relationship.
Data from various studies have estimated that roughly half of men aged 40-70 years old have some form of erectile dysfunction. It is further estimated that 10% of men aged 30-39 have erectile dysfunction with prevalence increasing to 59% of men aged 70-79. This extrapolates to over twenty million men in the United States alone with ED.