Couple worried about erectile dysfunction.

Understanding Erectile Dysfunction

Erectile dysfunction (ED) can be equally devastating for a man and his partner. There is hope for every man with erectile dysfunction to regain the confidence, control and wholeness to enjoy an active, satisfying sex life.

Get your ED score



Erectile dysfunction is a common condition that affects many men as well as their partners. ED is the inability to achieve or maintain an erection that is firm enough to have sexual intercourse2. In other words, the penis doesn’t get hard enough to allow you to have sex. It may begin in the bedroom, but it can have a profound effect on a man, his  self-esteem and his relationships3.  


Erectile Dysfunction happens when blood flow to the penis is limited or nerves are damaged. The causes of ED include but are not limited to diabetes, heart disease, prostate cancer treatment, depression, anxiety, and the side effects of some medications1, 5. Stress, lack of sleep, smoking and excess drinking can also affect your performance. In other words, ED affects men of every ethnicity, age and lifestyle.1, 5

Diabetes and Erectile Dysfunction
Heart Disease and Erectile Dysfunction
Prostate Cancer Treatment and Erectile Dysfunction


You may be surprised when you experience erectile dysfunction for the first time. In fact, more than half of men over 40 suffer from some degree of ED1. If you can’t get an erection more than 50% of the time, you should see a doctor. To better understand the link between your symptoms and ED, take the Sexual Health Inventory Management (SHIM) Survey5. The results should be shared with your doctor to help initiate a conversation about treatment options.

Get Your ED Score


Erectile Dysfunction is treatable at any age. Treating the underlying cause of ED with the support of your doctor, is a good place to start, such as adjusting your lifestyle, quitting smoking and reducing your stress. Medications (Viagra™, Cialis™, Levitra™ and Stendra™) are typically the first line of therapy, but many men need more. Medications are typically followed by one or more of these treatments: topical cream, vacuum devices, surgically implanted devices or penile injections. These other options are usually discussed with your physician.

ED Treatments


It has been estimated that 25 to 35 million men over the age of 18 are affected in Europe.6

Understand the link between your symptoms and Erectile Dysfunction

Treatment is available for all men with Erectile Dysfunction

Find an Implanter to discover the best solution for your ED

Old couple supporting themselves.

Ways to help your partner

Erectile Dysfunction is a difficult topic for couples to discuss. Talking openly can help reduce stress and improve your relationship. Acknowledge your feelings, reassure each other and resolve to work through the problem, together.

Discover more information



Erectile Dysfunction is a common medical problem. It is both physical and emotional, but that doesn’t mean you have to accept it. Most importantly, ED is treatable. The more you know about ED, the more helpful and positive you can be. Go to your doctor and ask questions. You can help him seek treatment, something many men are hesitant to do.

Diabetes and ED
Heart Disease and ED
Prostate Cancer Treatments and ED


A man with ED may withdraw from sex and his partner. Be patient. You may blame yourself, thinking you are no longer desirable. You may blame him and suspect infidelity. Be honest. Talk about what you each expect. If you noticed changes during sex, bring it up to him. While difficult, talking about ED may bring you closer and strengthen your relationship.

See Real Stories



Try to find a non-sexual place to talk at a time when both of you are relaxed. Communication is key. Turn off the TV and cell phones. Take a deep breath and don't be afraid to have this discussion. Focus on ways to solve ED, rather than on how it affects your relationship. If he isn’t ready to talk about it, see if he will talk to a doctor.

Conversation Starters


The fact that your partner is open to talking about ED is overcoming the biggest battle. But, it may not be as easy as simply taking a pill. Find solutions acceptable to both of you. Don’t be afraid to experiment and talk openly with each other. Many couples report an increase in desire after focusing on intimacy – kissing, hugging, stroking, etc. Talking about ED solutions may lead you both to healthier lifestyle choices.

Old couple with their foreheads touching.

Talking about how Erectile Dysfunction may change your life

Get Talking


  1. Gandaglia G, Briganti A, Jackson G, et al. A systematic review of the association between erectile dysfunction and cardiovascular disease. Eur Urol. 2014 May;65(5):968-78.
  2. Bohm M, Baumhäkel M, Teo K, et al. Erectile dysfunction predicts cardiovascular events in high-risk patients receiving Telmisartan, Ramipril, or both: The ongoing Telmisartan alone and in combination with Ramipril global endpoint trial/Telmisartan randomized assessment study in ACE intolerant subjects with cardiovascular disease (ONTARGET/TRANSCEND) trials. Circulation. 2010 Mar 30;121(12):1439-46.
  3. Jackson G, Rosen RC, et al. The second Princeton consensus on sexual dysfunction and cardiac risk: new guidelines for sexual medicine. J Sex Med. 2006 Jan;3(1):28–36.
  4. Montorsi R, Rigatti P, Carmingnani G, et al. AMS three-piece inflatable implants for erectile dysfunction: a long-term multi-institution study in 200 consecutive patients. Eur Urol. 2000;37:50-55.
  5. Erectile dysfunction (ED). American Urological Association Website. Downloaded January 21, 2013.Erectile dysfunction (ED). American Urological Association Website. Downloaded January 21, 2013.

Dear Visitor, please be informed that this website has been set up to ensure due and lawful access to our visitors, depending on their country of residence. In order to be directed to the relevant web portal, you are required to select the country in which you reside from the right-hand menu of options on the home page. We would like to remind you that it is your sole responsibility to correctly choose the country from which you wish to access the website. Please be aware that selecting a country that differs from the one from which you are connecting, could lead to you viewing information that may not be legally allowed under the laws of your country of residence. Should this occur, Boston Scientific declines any liability as to your access to such information.