Risk of death from cardiovascular disease is increased by 43% among men with ED, study shows.

CHICAGO—Erectile dysfunction (ED) is associated with an increased risk of death from any cause and from cardiovascular disease (CVD), new findings show.

The presence of ED should prompt an intensive evaluation of treatable risk factors, investigators concluded.

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Andre B. Araujo, PhD, director of epidemiology at New England Research Institutes Inc., in Watertown, Mass., and colleagues conducted the Massachusetts Male Aging Study, a prospective, population-based study of 1,709 men aged 40-70 years.

The team ascertained the presence and magnitude of ED using subjects’ self reports. No ED and minimal, moderate, and complete ED was reported by 56%, 23%, 8%, and 12% of men, respectively, Dr. Araujo reported here at the American Urological Association annual meeting.

During an average follow-up period of 15 years, 403 men died. Of these, 371 had complete data. ED was associated with a 26% increased risk of death from any cause and a 43% increased risk of CVD mortality independent of known risk factors for CVD mortality, the study showed.

ED was as strongly associated with CVD mortality as some conventional risk factors. For example, hypertension was associated with a 43% increased risk of CVD-related death.

This study reinforces current recommendations that state if a patient presents with ED, he should be worked-up and perhaps treated for CVD.