Let’s state some truths: the grass is green, the sky is blue, and prostate cancer is incredibly common.
Across Europe, prostate cancer accounts for an astonishing 23% of all male cancer diagnoses and 10% of male cancer deaths.
The numbers aren’t too far apart back at home base, either. According to the American Cancer Society, it’s projected that in 2023, over 288,300 people will be diagnosed with this cancer in that year alone.
The fact of the matter is this: prostate cancer is a highly common condition for men over 50, and it commonly manifests lower urinary tract symptoms.
With the multifactorial nature of erectile dysfunction, it’s easy for people to assume that prostate cancer can also lead to this sexual dysfunction.
But does prostate cancer cause erectile dysfunction? Well, the answer is quite complicated.
Let’s look a bit closer at how prostate cancer and erectile function are interconnected.
What is Erectile Dysfunction (ED)?
Erectile dysfunction is one of the most widespread sexual health conditions in the world. In the US alone, over 30 million men are severely impacted by this condition, and tens (if not hundreds) of millions more suffer from it around the globe. In fact, ED affects nearly half of all men aged 40-70 years old to some extent.
Erectile dysfunction is a type of sexual dysfunction that is characterized by the inability to attain or maintain an erection, either during sexual intercourse or masturbation.
This condition adversely affects a person’s ability to engage in sexual activities. “ED” is a broad terminology used to define any erectile difficulty that interferes with one’s sense of well-being. This means that it can be short-term to long-term or situational to chronic.
When left untreated, ED can also lead to a wide range of mental conditions such as depression, anxiety, relationship issues, and low self-esteem.
If you’re suffering from erectile dysfunction, it’s important to get it treated promptly. Getting in touch with a medical professional is highly recommended to prevent cases of ED from worsening.
Symptoms of Prostate Cancer
If you’re concerned about prostate cancer, it’s important to be aware of the symptoms.
Coming across any of these prostate cancer symptoms means you need to get in touch with a doctor right away:
- Difficulty starting urination
- A weak flow of urine
- Frequent night urination
- Trouble completely emptying the bladder
- Burning pain when urinating
- Blood in the urine or semen
- Persistent back, hip, and pelvis pain
- Painful ejaculation
You shouldn’t wait until you encounter these symptoms to seek medical attention. Early detection through annual screenings is key to catching cancers before they advance into bigger problems.
Risk Factors of Prostate Cancer
On top of being aware of the symptoms, it’s also essential to be conscious of the risk factors associated with prostate cancer.
This way, you’ll be extra cautious should you find yourself relating with any of the below categories:
- Age: The older you are, the higher your chances of contracting prostate cancer. About 60% of cases happen to men 65 years and older.
- Race: Men of African American descent are twice more likely to get prostate cancer than Caucasian, Asian, and Hispanic men.
- Lifestyle: People who live a mostly sedentary lifestyle with a less healthy diet are more prone to developing prostate cancer.
- Family history: Men with an uncle or grandfather with prostate cancer are genetically predisposed to contracting this cancer as well.
Even if you don’t fit into any of these categories, it’s still important to get assessed by a doctor regularly to prevent other conditions from forming.
Erectile Dysfunction and Prostate Cancer: The Connection
Here’s the truth you’ve been waiting for: prostate cancer doesn’t directly cause erectile dysfunction.
While this may seem like good news for your sex life, you’re not exactly off the hook. The reason? Prostate cancer treatment is the main reason for your erectile woes.
Let us explain.
Radiation therapy and radical prostatectomy (prostate cancer surgery of the prostate gland) are two common treatments for prostate cancer. Both of these can cause nerve damage to your blood vessels, which could disrupt the normal flow of blood around the body, including the penis.
In addition, prostatectomy can also reduce the androgen count in your body, leading to low testosterone levels. This decrease can lead to a decreased libido or sex drive and, consequently, prolonged difficulty getting into the mood for an erection.
The damage caused by these prostate cancer treatments can cause long-term trauma to the blood vessels, which can worsen erectile quality over time. In contrast, men who underwent surgery instead experienced an immediate decrease in erectile quality, but an improvement over time.
Besides these two treatments, hormone therapy—specifically androgen deprivation therapy (ADT)—is administered to prostate cancer patients to treat cancer. However, this comes with notable side effects like a loss of sexual desire and erectile dysfunction.
How to Get Better Erections
Suffering from erectile dysfunction is not something anyone with an active sex life would want to have.
Fortunately, there are ways you can restore your sexual function and feel sexual stimulation again.
Whether you’re looking for medical advice to improve your erections or lifestyle changes, here are some ways to treat erectile dysfunction.
- ED Therapy: This therapy uses a combination of gels, creams, and injections to restore erectile quality.
- RestoreWave therapy: This therapy uses a wand-like device that emits sound waves to break plaque obstructing blood flow to the penis.
- Penile prosthesis surgery: This surgical treatment involves inserting penile implants to aid the penis in getting erections.
- Aphrodisiac diet: Eating omega-3-rich foods and herbs like ashwagandha is great to boost erections naturally.
- Exercising regularly: Getting at least 150 minutes of sweat in a week can tremendously boost erectile quality—and energy levels—over time.
Improve Your Sexual Health with Jacksonville, Florida’s Top Male Health Clinic, Prime Men’s Medical Center
Living with prostate cancer can be a nightmare for some people, but with the advancement of medical technology, the chances of overcoming it are higher than ever.
And if you want to improve your sexual health on top of that, that’s entirely possible too.
With the help of the medical experts at Prime Men’s Medical Center in Jacksonville. We can provide you with various treatment plans like weight loss therapy, ED therapy, and hormone growth therapy.
Schedule a free consultation with us today to find the most suitable treatment for you.