Here’s the word that strikes real terror into every man’s heart, and deflates more than his ego. Impotence. Or erectile dysfunction, as it’s known nowadays. It’s the Darth Vader of men’s sexuality and probably the most feared word in a modern male’s vocabulary.
Despite intensive focus over the past few years, and the introduction of Viagra, Levitra and Cialis (what I call Lazarus drugs, because they raise the supposedly dead), impotence is still a word few men will ever let pass their lips. Especially when it comes to their own sexual performance.
Despite the contention according to medical studies that 50% of men have difficulty maintaining an erection at some time in their lives, few men will admit it.
It’s true that Playboy’s Hugh Hefner has become the poster boy for admitting publicly he takes Viagra and many other Ed drugs. But, notably, he never ever says he needs to. Hey, who can blame him for basking in the amazement and envy he gets at 80 years old, stating he regularly services several young beauties. Maybe he takes it intravenously.
But for the average guy, having erection problems often causes him such deep emotional trauma, despair and insecurity, he’s terrified of anyone knowing. Even his own partner.
That is a tragedy — not just for him but his partner as well, as refusing to acknowledge impotence can cause irreparable harm to an intimate relationship.
In the case of a wife, it’s often the case that she blames herself, feels rejected, guilty or betrayed as she can’t figure out why sex has stopped. But, hey, if your guy can’t perform in bed, don’t get mad — get him a doctor!
Especially as it’s now known that hiding such a major problem can be physically very dangerous.
It’s always been known ED can be a link to other serious health issues such as diabetes, but the newest studies from the American Urology Association show it can be an early warning signal for upcoming cardiovascular disease, even if there are no symptoms yet.
“If a man is experiencing ED, he should definitely have his cardiovascular risk factors investigated,?? says Dr. Miguel Llano, a physician at the Canadian Men’s Clinic, specializing in erectile difficulties.
Although there are a number of different medical treatments at the moment for ED — including the pill trio (Viagra etc.) vacuum devices, surgical treatment and personal injection therapy (despite the wince-making thoughts, one of the most successful of all the treatments) — Dr. Llano states that the future (maybe 2011) will involve gene therapy.
Spearheaded by the Albert Einstein College of Medicine, New York, gene therapy is a genetic and cell-based technology that acts very differently from the drugs in Viagra, Cialis and Levitra.
Dr. Llano explains: “Gene therapy relaxes the smooth muscle cells by blocking the calcium. Without calcium ions present, smooth muscle cells relax and the tissue will then also relax. This allows blood to flow in and produce an erection.”
So, paradoxically, a penis has to relax internally in order to stiffen up with blood flow. But while the focus has been intense in recent years on male impotence, solutions to the growing problem of female sexual dysfunction, while not totally disregarded, have been less successful.
After their many attempts to create a Viagra pill for women failed in the past, Pfizer basically said that, since satisfactory sex for women is obviously more “in the head” than “in the parts” a pill wasn’t the answer. Of course not as Women need love and romance.