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ABSTRACT: The last few decades have seen a marked increase in mean life expectancy in Central Europe. This has made elderly people and their quality of life a matter of ever-increasing medical concern. Besides the lack of population based studies in Central Europe, the identifying risk factors for the development of erectile dysfunction (ED) is crucial.
A newly developed and validated questionnaire on male erectile dysfunction was mailed to a representative population sample of 8000 men 30 to 80 years of age in the Cologne urban district.
The response included 4489 analysable replies (56,1 %). The median age was 51,8 years. Prevalence of ED was estimated at about 19.2 %, with a steep age-related increase (2,3 - 53,4 %) Therapeutic necessity (defined by co-occurrence of ED and dissatisfaction with sex life), also increases with age. The overall number of ED sufferers seeking therapy was 6,8 %. The following illnesses where seen in the ED group: heart failure (14,7 %), pelvic surgery (18,8 %), diabetes mellitus (20,2 %), peripheral arterial circulatory disorders (21,5 %), herniated disc (23,2 %) and hypertension (32,0 %). Although the pathogenetic pathway remains unclear with a prevalence of 72 % "lower urinary tract symptoms" (LUTS) seems to be an age independent risk factor. In contrast, the prevalence of ED in healthy men was around 6,6 %.
ED is a common disorder, contributing to dissatisfaction with sex life in a considerable proportion of men. ED is frequently associated with chronic diseases. For this reason adequate interdisciplinary diagnostic workup is essential, to offer patients individually adapted treatment.
DMW - Deutsche Medizinische Wochenschrift 02/2004; 129(4):131-6. · 0.65 Impact Factor