What is ERECTILE DYSFUNCTION?
Erectile dysfunction (ED) describes a condition where a man is unable to develop and sustain an erection for sexual intercourse approximately 50% of the time, or more.
Causes of ED can be physical, psychological, drug or substance related.
Erectile dysfunction can be caused by damage to nerves, arteries, muscles and other tissues that result from another chronic condition, or an injury to the penis, prostate, bladder or pelvis. ED may also result as a side effect of certain drugs including blood pressure medicine, antihistamines, antidepressants, tranquilizers and other drugs. Psychological factors such as stress, anxiety, guilt, depression, low self-esteem, and fear can limit the stimulation required to produce or sustain an erection. Diseases of the arteries can affect blow flow and also cause erectile dysfunction.
Once erectile dysfunction is diagnosed by a doctor, treatment is based on the cause. In some cases, lifestyle changes such as exercising and getting more sleep may help ED.
Medication may be required for treatment, or changing medications may be required. Talk therapy may help treat psychological road blocks.
Some patients require mechanical assistance and will use medical vacuum device to draw blood into the penis. These devices have a plastic cylinder for the penis, a vacuum that pulls blood into the penis, and an elastic band that is placed around the base of the penis to keep the blood from leaving the penis, allowing the man to maintain the erection.
In some cases, surgery is required to rebuild arteries that deliver blood to the penis or to insert a penile implant.
Only your doctor can advise you on what treatment might best suit your individual circumstances.
What is MENOPAUSE?
Menopause describes the time when a woman no longer menstruates, and has not done so for 1 year. The process of change leading up to that time is called perimenopause. Menopause can occur naturally, after completing the perimenopause process or, suddenly after having their ovaries removed surgically, called surgical menopause.
Approx 85% of women have at least some of the following symptoms, which fade over time until reaching menopause:
-Hot flashes often with heavy sweating, and/or night sweats,
-Emotional changes such as mood swings, irritability, anxiety, memory loss
-Vaginal dryness, itching or irritation
-Bladder infections, bladder control problems
-Palpitations, dizziness, tingling, restlessness
-Weight and skin changes
It is important to know that menopause brings an increased risk for osteoporosis and heart disease.
Treatment for the symptoms of menopause include:
Hormone replacement therapy (HRT): a combination of estrogen and progestin are replaced artificially, however this therapy does involve some serious side effects. Each woman must discuss these seriously with her doctor and decide for herself.
Bisphosphonates: these drugs are used to help prevent and treat osteoporosis and carry less risk than HRT
Selective estrogen receptor modulators (SERMs): these drugs improve bone strength but cause more hot flashes and may increase gallstones and risk of blood clots
Alternative therapies: be sure to to talk with your doctor before beginning any alternative therapy. Some women find relief using supplements, acupuncture, massage, homeopathy and naturpathy.
Vaginal lubricants: ask your pharmacist to recommend a vaginal lubricant to ease dryness and make intercourse more comfortable
Weight-bearing exercise: to reduce your blood pressure, cholesterol levels, your risk of osteoporosis, and your risk of heart disease