Erectile dysfunction a red flag for heart health

The Australian research, from the Sax Institute’s 45 and Up Study of around 95,000 men, is the first to show a direct link between the severity of erectile dysfunction and cardiovascular disease (CVD) events.

The men gave information about health and lifestyle factors and were followed for 2–3 years, recording 7855 hospital admissions related to cardiovascular disease and 2304 deaths.

Among men without previous CVD, those with severe versus no erectile dysfunction had a 60% increased risk of ischaemic heart disease, eight times the risk of heart failure and a 35% increased risk of all CVD. For men with previous CVD the increased risk of all-cause mortality rose from 93% to 137%.

Among men without previous CVD, the risk of atrioventricular and left bundle branch block increased more than sixfold.

Around one in five men aged 40 and over report moderate or severe erectile dysfunction, and lead author Professor Emily Banks said the