Common beliefs about erection problems
Erection problems are uncommon
This is untrue – most men simply do not talk about it. A survey sponsored by the pharmaceutical company Pharmacia & Upjohn found that more than 1 in 4 of the UK male population over the age of 16 has experienced erectile disorder to some degree. Of these, over half experienced the problem as one-off incidents and a quarter suffered erectile disorder most or all of the time. There are probably 20 million men with erection problems in the USA, and 2–3 million in the UK.
Erection problems are usually psychological
This is an old-fashioned view; impotence is most commonly due to a physical cause.
Testosterone injections/patches are a good cure for erection problems
Testosterone is of use only in the uncommon situation the man has a proven shortage of testosterone.
Viagra-type drugs don't work for everyone
These drugs are successful in only 50–80% of cases.
Erectile failure (also called impotence or erectile dysfunction) means that you cannot achieve or maintain an erection of the penis sufficient for sexual intercourse. Sex drive is often normal. Impotence can occur at any age, but becomes more common with increasing age. Because the average age of the population is getting older, experts predict that by the year 2010 almost half the men in the UK will have erection problems. But impotence is not inevitable with ageing – 40% of 90-year-old men are able to have a normal erection.
Written by: Dr Margaret Stearn
Edited by: Dr Margaret Stearn
Last updated: Tuesday, January 10th 2012
In part 3 of his penis trilogy, Dr Phil Hammond discusses penis size, shape and function, and what you can do about erectile dysfunction. Click on the video below for more information.
Useful contacts for Erection problems
Click to see all the contacts that you may find useful in relation to Erection problems
996 people have
tackled this problem!
Tell us your thoughts
Did you find what you were looking for?
Add a comment
A problem shared is a problem halved: help others by sharing your frustrations or successes at tackling your health problem.
We have noticed that many of your queries are actually answered on the website, so please read carefully before submitting a comment. As all comments are moderated, there will be a delay before your comment appears. Please note that we cannot respond to individual requests for feedback.