PAD and ED: Is PAD Causing Erectile Dysfunction?
Peripheral artery disease (PAD) is a common, yet serious, health condition. It can impact the ability to walk, climb stairs, and perform normal daily activities. PAD can also place you at increased risk for dangerous health issues like heart attack, stroke, and limb amputation.
If you have PAD, you may experience a range of painful and uncomfortable symptoms. Common symptoms include leg pain, cramping, weakness, and skin ulceration. Additionally, some men experience erectile dysfunction (ED) due to arterial insufficiency.
At USA Vascular Centers, we understand that discussing ED can feel awkward or embarrassing for some. That said, we want you to know that our compassionate doctors can help determine what is going on and make appropriate treatment recommendations. Our primary goal is to help our patients improve their overall quality of life.
Below, we share some basic information about peripheral artery disease, erectile dysfunction, and available PAD treatment options. For personalized treatment recommendations, we suggest consulting one of our leading vascular specialists.
How Can PAD Cause ED?
To better understand how peripheral artery disease can cause erectile dysfunction, it may be beneficial to first discuss what causes PAD. The most common cause of PAD is atherosclerosis, a narrowing or blockage in the arteries leading to the lower extremities. This condition develops when plaque builds up within the arterial walls.
Along with potentially impacting the legs and feet, atherosclerosis can also affect the male genitalia. In other words, erectile dysfunction due to arterial insufficiency can develop when the arteries leading to this region experience a buildup of plaque that limits proper blood flow.
What Causes Erectile Dysfunction?
There are many potential causes behind erectile dysfunction, including hormones, medications, injury, obesity, smoking, and disease. Additionally, emotional components like stress, anxiety, and depression can be contributing factors.
Can PAD cause ED? Peripheral artery disease affects circulation to the lower extremities, including the legs, feet, and penis. Since PAD causes a lack of proper blood flow, it can result in erectile dysfunction and a range of other symptoms.
Keep in mind that PAD is just one potential cause of ED. To accurately determine what is going on with your unique situation, we recommend visiting your doctor for a full medical evaluation.
What To Do To Treat ED if You Think You Might Have PAD
If your doctor believes that peripheral artery disease is behind your erectile dysfunction, they will likely recommend treatment. At USA Vascular Centers, our experts specialize in the diagnosis, treatment, and ongoing care of PAD.
During an initial consultation, one of our vascular specialists will work one-on-one with you to develop personalized treatment recommendations. Your PAD treatment plan may involve a combination of:
- Lifestyle modifications: We encourage our patients to reduce their PAD risks by following a healthy lifestyle. This includes maintaining a healthy Body Mass Index (BMI), exercising regularly, eating a well-rounded diet, and quitting smoking.
- Medications: Many individuals with PAD can benefit from taking medications to improve blood flow throughout the body. If your doctor prescribes medications for you, be sure to take them exactly as instructed.
- Medical procedures: Sometimes, a medical procedure may be necessary to reestablish proper circulation to the affected region. The good news is that there are a range of available treatments that can help improve your quality of life.
All of our treatment procedures involve three primary objectives:
- To alleviate symptoms
- To improve quality of life
- To reduce your risk of heart attack, stroke, and limb amputation
Erectile Dysfunction Treatment for PAD Patients
If PAD is responsible for your erectile dysfunction, your vascular specialist may recommend treatment. Along with making healthy lifestyle changes and taking prescribed medications, you may benefit from one of our minimally invasive, outpatient procedures.
Depending on the severity of your PAD, your doctor may suggest one or more of the following state-of-the-art procedures:
- Stent placement
To learn more about your treatment options, schedule an appointment online today.
Schedule a Consultation With USA Vascular Today
If you have questions or concerns about arterial insufficiency, erectile dysfunction treatment, or your overall vascular health, we want you to know that we are available to help. Our range of minimally invasive, outpatient PAD treatments aim to lessen symptoms, reduce risks of dangerous health issues, and improve your overall quality of life.
If you are suffering from PAD and ED, we invite you to visit one of our nationwide treatment centers. For your convenience, we also offer online health consultations. Wherever you choose to make your appointment, we look forward to meeting you.