Underlying Health Conditions

ED may affect up to 16 million people in the Philippines. The condition’s prevalence is over 50% in those over 50 years old and increases with a person’s age.

Normal erectile function can be affected by problems with a person’s blood flow, nervous system, and hormone levels. A person may also experience ED due to psychological factors, such as anxiety over sexual performance.

Physical causes

Most cases of ED are secondary. This means that erectile function has been normal but becomes problematic. Causes of a new and persistent problem are usually physical.

In rare cases, a person may have primary ED. This is where a person has never achieved an erection. The cause of primary ED may be psychological or the result of a physical condition.

A person should consult a medical professional if they experience persistent erection problems, as an underlying medical condition could be causing the issue. A proper diagnosis can help address any underlying medical issues and help resolve sexual difficulties.

Some of the most common physical causes of ED include:-heart disease and narrowing of blood vessels


-high blood pressure

-high cholesterol

-obesity and metabolic syndrome

-Parkinson’s disease

-multiple sclerosis

-hormonal disorders, including thyroid conditions and testosterone deficiency

-structural or anatomical disorders of the penis, such as Peyronie disease

-smoking, alcohol use disorder, and substance abuse, including cocaine use
-treatments for prostate disease

-surgical complications

-injuries in the pelvic area or spinal cord

-radiation therapy to the pelvic region

-Atherosclerosis is a common cause of blood flow problems. Atherosclerosis causes a narrowing or clogging of arteries in the penis, preventing the necessary blood flow to produce an erection.

Numerous prescription medications can also cause ED. A person taking prescription medications should consult their doctor before stopping or changing their medications.

Some drugs that may cause ED include:

-drugs to control high blood pressure

-heart medications such as digoxin

-anxiety treatments

-antidepressants, including monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs), selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), and tricyclic antidepressants

-opioid painkillers

-some cancer drugs, including chemotherapeutic agents


-hormone drugs

-Physical causes account for 90 percent of ED cases, with psychological causes much less common.

Psychological causes

Psychological factors can cause or contribute to ED, with factors ranging from treatable mental health illnesses to everyday emotional states that most people experience at some time. These are less commonTrusted Source than physical causes, however.

Psychological factors can include:

-fear of intimacy


-general anxiety

A person may also be unable to attain a full erection due to specific sexual performance anxiety, a common psychological factor in people with ED. Sexual performance anxiety affects 9-25% of males, according to a review.

It is also important to note that there can be an overlap between medical and psychosocial causes. For instance, if a person is obese, blood flow changes can affect that person’s ability to maintain an erection, which is a physical cause. However, the person may also have low self-esteem, impacting erectile function, which is a psychosocial cause.