Psoriasis increases erectile dysfunction risk in men, high blood pressure and diabetes raise the odds: Study

By: Devon Andre | Men's Health | Wednesday, June 08, 2016 - 12:30 PM

Psoriasis increases erectile dysfunction risk in menPsoriasis, high blood pressure, and diabetes increase erectile dysfunction risk in men. The study looked at sexual function in 191 patients with psoriasis and 191 healthy men. Fifty-three percent of men with psoriasis reported erectile dysfunction, compared to 40 percent of men without the skin condition.

Furthermore, men with psoriasis were more likely to report more severe erectile dysfunction, whereas healthy males reported milder symptoms.

Men with psoriasis also had worse erectile dysfunction outcomes if they had other conditions, like high blood pressure or diabetes. The study suggests these men can improve their outcomes by controlling the concomitant health conditions.

The results of the study reveal that men with psoriasis should be monitored for erectile dysfunction along with other factors including depression and cardiovascular disease which can impact erectile function as well.

Dr. Alejandro Molina-Leyva, a dermatologist at Complejo Hospitalario Torrecardenas in Almeria, said, “The psychological impairment of the disease, including anxiety, depression, embarrassment of their body because of psoriasis plaques, stigmatization, and low self-esteem reduce sexual desire and produce insecurity and lack of concentration during sexual relationships, developing erectile dysfunction.”

Dr. Jon Goulding, a dermatologist at the Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust in Birmingham, U.K., added, “A screen for cardiovascular risk factors (e.g., diabetes, hypertension, etc.) is crucial to pick up those which could be treated, to reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke. Patients with psoriasis already carry a higher than average risk of cardiovascular disease, so they should strictly follow standard public health advice about maintaining a healthy body weight and exercise levels, stop smoking, and reduce alcohol intake.”

With so many treatments available for erectile dysfunction, men do not need to suffer in silence. If they speak up to their doctors, the problem can become alleviated and possibly resolved.

Psoriasis and its effect on your sex life

Psoriasis, a skin condition, can appear anywhere on the body, but its effects don’t just end on the skin – they can impact a person’s sex life as well. Having visible red patches all over the body can make one quite self-conscious, raising some challenges when it comes to sex. But sex with psoriasis is possible and here are some tips to help improve it.

  • Talk about it: Not only with your partner, but with your doctor, too. They may be able to offer you some guidance on how to improve your sex life. Furthermore, you should have an open conversation with your partner to help them understand your worries, so that you two together can come up with a solution.
  • Boost your self-confidence: Join support groups, speak with others, do whatever it takes to help boost your self-confidence as it can increase intimacy.
  • Turn off the lights: For some, keeping the lights off helps ease the stress as their partner would be unable to see the psoriasis patches.
  • Use lubricants: Cooling lubricants can help make sex easier and more enjoyable. Avoid warming lubricants as they can cause a flare-up.
  • Stick to your treatment plan: Following your treatment plan can help reduce the risk of flare-ups and make you more comfortable as a result.

Sex doesn’t need to disappear from your life just because you have psoriasis. Furthermore, sex is a natural stress reducer, so it can help you feel better and more relaxed. By following some of these tips, you can go back to enjoying sex once again.

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