By Sudeshna Saha

Bachelor of Physiotherapy

07 October 2021
Medically reviewed by
Sumayya Salam
Pharm D
Is it true, Covid-19 can cause erectile dysfunction?
Table of Contents

Erectile dysfunction is the most significant part of the medical category due to some physical and psychological issues. Physical issues that can cause erectile dysfunction are low testosterone, too much or too little exercise, alcohol, and drug use. In contrast, psychological issues include depression, stress, and problem in your relationship.

The quality of your life and sexual well-being can be significantly affected by erectile dysfunction in men. In some men, ED can eventually decrease Libido. People having reduced interest in sexual activity leads to personal distress and affects their partners’ romantic relationships.

The study claims that the new coronavirus could make it hard to perform in the bedroom. Researchers and doctors have established a link between the existing COVID 19 & ED. There has been a significant increase in the number of new patients during this pandemic with erectile dysfunction, the majority being men between the age group of 40 to 50 years. (Sansone, A., Mollaioli, D., Ciocca, G., Colonnello, E., Limoncin, E., Balercia, G. and Jannini, E.A., 2021)

The link between COVID-19 & erectile dysfunction

From our hearts to our brains, these viruses have a strong inflammatory response throughout our entire body. It is not surprising that the virus is connected to sexual dysfunction.

A new publication in The World Journal of Men’s Health explained the cases of two men who have been infected with coronavirus infections. Almost after six to eight months, they still had the virus particles present in their penis. They had developed severe erectile dysfunction even though they do not have symptoms of ED before having COVID -19.

If you have been recently diagnosed with Covid-19 and struggling to maintain or achieve an erection, these are the ways your libido can be affected. (Sansone, A., Mollaioli, D., Ciocca, G., Colonnello, E., Limoncin, E., Balercia, G. and Jannini, E.A., 2021)

Damaged blood vessels in the penis

The penis contains the smallest and most fragile blood vessels. They supply blood to the lower part of your body; they are also crucial in providing blood to your reproductive organs and help in getting an erection. Covid-19 can trigger hyper inflammation in the body, resulting in small blood clots forming, and inflammation in the lining of the blood vessels. Hence, the supply of blood to the penis gets blocked or narrowed, making it difficult to get an erection.

Damages cells in the testicles

Testosterone is an essential male hormone that plays a vital role in sex drive. In men, it is produced in testicles. Testosterone is responsible for stimulating sperm production. According to research, it suggests that covid-19 may decrease the level of testosterone and fertility in men. You may get your hormones checked to ensure that your testicles are functioning well.

Mental health impact

Most people have started experiencing emotional distress during this pandemic due to isolation, social distancing, loss of loved ones, and economic crisis. These issues could easily reduce your sex drive as sexual activity is closely connected to mental health. However, those who are recovering from the virus and are still experiencing the side effects and symptoms are most likely at risk for erectile dysfunction.

Closer impact on poor health

Erectile dysfunction is a symptom of an underlying health condition. If you are already facing poor health conditions, you may be more likely to get affected with ED and severe Covid-19 and additional health problems. Covid-19 affects the heart conditions and worsens the underlying cardiovascular diseases, such as myocarditis, arrhythmias, and acute cardiovascular events. As a result, in some cases, men may start consuming new medicines that may likely affect their sexual health.

Treating erectile dysfunction

Covid-19 has already impacted our daily lives in many ways. Additionally, ED as a positive side effect will be a significant defeat for those men who want to pursue specific goals. If you have recovered from the covid-19 infection and are experiencing ED, you should consult your healthcare specialist or urologist before consuming blue pills or any other medications. Your healthcare assistant may determine the cause of your problem and suggest you some effective solutions.

The treatment of ED depends on the cause of the problem. For example, your healthcare professional may change your medications that are causing sex-related side effects.

Eating a nutritious diet, getting enough sleep, reducing alcohol intake, and building up strong immunity to resist the virus may help increase an individual interest in sexual activity and improve a person’s overall health.

If a man has low testosterone leading to erectile dysfunction, doctors recommend undergoing testosterone replacement therapy to restore sex drive. This could be in the form of injections, oral formulations, or topical patches.

Best Way to Avoid The Effect Of Covid-19 (Get a Covid-19 Dose, and Mask Up)

  • To protect yourself and others, wear a mask that covers your mouth and nose.
  • Get vaccinated to boost immunity against the virus.
  • Besides getting vaccinated, follow the centres for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines and do everything you can to prevent the spread of the virus.
  • It would be helpful if you avoid crowds and poorly ventilated indoor places.
  • Stay almost 6 feet apart from people who do not stay with you.
  • Always wash your hands and use hand sanitizers frequently.

You can also talk to your healthcare professional about various available options for managing and treating the symptoms.

What are the common side effects of the new Covid-19 vaccine?

The side effects may affect your ability to do your daily activities, but they are for a short period and disappear in a few days. Some of the common side effects of Covid-19 dose are-

  • Redness, swelling, and pain in the arms.
  • Headache
  • Tiredness
  • Muscle pain
  • Chills
  • Fatigue
  • Fever
  • Nausea.

Infrequent events of demyelinating disorders have been reported following vaccination. No other vaccine-related adverse severe effects have been reported.

You may consult your healthcare professional or consume paracetamol to alleviate the minor side effects of the Covid-19 vaccine. If you have not been vaccinated yet, find a Covid-19 dose.

If you are vaccinated completely, you can start doing all those activities you have stopped during this pandemic. Fully vaccinated people can participate in various outdoor events and visits safely, without much risk.

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