Men Who Vape More Than Twice As Likely To Suffer From Erectile Dysfunction, New Study Claims
Erectile dysfunction is twice as likely to be an issue for men if they use e-cigarettes, according to a new study.
The US study gathered data from more than 13,000 American men, and looked at the differences between those who use the devices and non-smokers.
Conducted by a team from Grossman School of Medicine and Johns Hopkins University in New York, the research found that those who used vapes or electronic cigarettes were 2.4 times more likely to experience impotency than non-smokers.
The study, published in the American Journal of Preventative Medicine, originally incorporated 13,711 participants. However, the number was later reduced to 11,207 men, none of whom had any previous diagnosis of cardiovascular disease.
In the larger group, men were 2.2 times more likely to experience erectile dysfunction if they used e-cigarettes. In the reduced group, the figure rose to 2.4.
Within the study, 14% of participants used vapes and e-cigarettes, 21% still smoked cigarettes, and half of all of the participants used to smoke cigarettes.
Erectile dysfunction was reported by 10% of all men included in the study.
Experts who conducted the research believe that the ability for blood vessels in the penis to dilate is restricted as a result of high levels of nicotine reducing blood flow. However, the experiment did not strictly prove the link between the two.
Moreover, testosterone levels in the body are considered by the researchers as potentially being reduced by chemicals found in nicotine fluids.
After England announced plans to help smokers quit by prescribing them e-cigarettes, the team urged that men should be warned about the potential effects of such products.
In the UK and US, around one in five men suffer from impotence. Half of cases of impotence are found in men over 50, as it becomes more common as men age.
Scientists are still analysing the relationship between sexual health problems and e-cigarettes, as despite being considered healthier, nicotine was already previously established as being a cause of erectile dysfunction from traditional tobacco products.
Dr Omar El Shahawyl who led the latest study, noted that even in consideration of past smoking habits, vapers were still considered as more at risk of erection problems than those who do not use e-cigarettes.
Our analyses accounted for the cigarette smoking history of participants, including those who were never cigarette smokers to begin with, so it is possible that daily e-cigarette vaping may be associated with higher odds of erectile dysfunction regardless of one’s smoking history.
We need to fully investigate the relationship between vaping products and erectile dysfunction, and potential implications for men’s sexual health.
Our findings underscore the need to conduct further studies to contextualize the e-cigarette use pattern that is relatively safer than smoking.
The results of the research were formulated from those involved self-reporting their symptoms via a questionnaire, which could have resulted in the research being less accurate.
The study also did not clarify whether traditional smoking or the use of vapes and e-cigarettes was worse for making men more at risk of erection issues.
Moving forward, the study hopes to uncover whether the damaging effects of vapes and e-cigarettes on men’s erections can be reversed if men quit smoking, and also if the effects vary based on what type of electronic nicotine device is used.
While consultant uro-andrologist Giulio Garaffa confirmed the study had a ‘foundation’ in suggesting e-cigarettes impacted men’s ability to get erections, he suggested that because of the removal of substances such as tar and carbon monoxide, e-cigarettes and vapes are likely to be less damaging than normal cigarettes and their effects more reversible.
He stressed that anyone suffering from erectile dysfunction should contact a health professional because of the link to potential cardiovascular disease.
Despite the World Health Organization calling e-cigarettes and vapes ‘undoubtedly harmful’, England is still pursuing the prescription of e-cigarettes to help smokers quit.
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American Journal of Preventative Medicine