Can a Diabetic Patient Take Viagra for Erectile Dysfunction?

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Erectile dysfunction (ED) is the most common sexual disorder experienced by men, with premature ejaculation being the second commonest. 

The risk of developing erectile dysfunctions is much higher in men who have diabetes. 

There are several effective medications that can be used for the management of erectile dysfunctions including Viagra. 

However, it is important to find out whether these drugs are safe and effective for treating the underlying cause of sexual disorders.

Here is a brief discussion about whether diabetic patients can use Viagra with a focus on how safe and effective it would be for you to use this medication. 

Erectile dysfunction in diabetic patients 

Erectile dysfunction refers to the inability of men to get and maintain erections. The prevalence of ED is higher in diabetic patients than in men with normal blood sugar levels.

It is estimated that nearly 35-75% of diabetic men experience varying degrees of erectile dysfunctions during their lifetime. 

The frequency and intensity of ED may be very high in men who have uncontrolled blood sugars for a longer duration with pre-existing comorbidities. 

Also, it has been found that men with uncontrolled diabetes may develop ED nearly 10 years earlier than those without diabetes. 

And as age increases, ED may become worse, especially when the diabetes control is poor. 

This marks the need to be aware of whether the use of medications like Viagra would be safe in such cases and that it will help men manage ED without causing serious side effects. 

Can a Diabetic Patient Take Viagra?

Yes, Viagra can be given to diabetic patients. Men with diabetes who experience an inability to achieve or maintain erections may use Viagra to improve their sexual health. It is considered safe and effective for correcting the underlying vascular abnormalities responsible for ED. 

It has been found that the use of phosphodiesterase type 5 inhibitors (PDE5 inhibitors) like Viagra may improve vascular health thereby improving the blood flow into the penis during intercourse allowing men to get an erection. 

What is Viagra and how does it work?

Viagra is commonly used for the management of erectile dysfunctions. It contains sildenafil Citrate that belongs to the class of drugs called PDE5 inhibitors (Phosphodiesterase type 5 inhibitors). 

It works by improving the blood flow to the penis, making it harder and more erect through a mechanism discussed beneath. 

Viagra causes dilation of the arteries in the penile region due to which the amount of blood flowing into the penis increases and makes it fuller. 

At the same time, Viagra also causes constriction of the veins that take blood away from the penis. 

The constriction of these veins leads to the accumulation of blood into the penis thereby keeping it erect for a longer duration.

This is how Viagra can help men get and maintain an erection with its ability to regulate the dilation and constriction of the blood vessels. 

What are the contraindications to Viagra?

The use of Viagra is contraindicated in men who suffer from the following conditions:

  • Blood cancers such as leukemia or multiple myeloma
  • Significant loss of hearing 
  • Uncontrolled hypertension 
  • History of a heart attack
  • A sudden worsening of cardiac symptoms like chest pain 
  • Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy
  • Irregular heart rhythm
  • Chronic cardiac failure
  • Cerebrovascular stroke
  • Severe renal impairment
  • A sudden loss of vision 
  • Structural abnormalities of the penis such as Peyronie’s disease

Causes of Erectile Dysfunction in a diabetic patient. 

Men with diabetes may develop ED as a result of the complex interplay between the dysfunctions related to the nerves, blood vessels, and the muscles as explained beneath. 

  • Neurological dysfunctions caused due to diabetes can prevent stimulation of the blood vessels and muscles in the penile region following sexual arousal due to which an erection fails to occur.
  • Weakness or damage to the muscles in the pelvic floor can prevent men from holding the erection for longer thus causing ED. 
  • Uncontrolled blood sugar levels, dietary restrictions, and the fear of developing complications may result in severe mental stress in men with diabetes.  As a result, they may develop a loss of libido. This can lead to a lack of adequate sexual arousal needed to get an erection. 
  • Poor cardiovascular health is a common comorbidity in men with diabetes.  Inefficient functioning of the heart can reduce the pumping of the blood due to which the flow of blood into the penis reduces causing an inability to get an erection even after sexual arousal.
  • Obesity and increased cholesterol levels are common in men with diabetes. These comorbidities can worsen existing ED. 

Treatment Options for Diabetic Men with Erectile Dysfunctions

Men with diabetes who have difficulty in achieving and maintaining erections can use oral medications like Viagra (sildenafil Citrate). 

Viagra can improve the blood flow to the penis and help men get an erection. 

Here are other treatments that can improve the results and enhance the sexual pleasure of men with diabetes:

  • Vacuum erection devices
  • Intracavernous injection therapy
  • Venous constriction devices
  • Penile prosthesis (malleable and inflatable)
  • Intraurethral therapy
  • Sex therapy including counseling 

Lifestyle interventions for managing ED 

Men with diabetes are advised to adopt the following lifestyle habits to improve their ability to get an erection:

  • They should reduce their intake of foods containing simple sugars like cakes, chocolates, pastries, and soft drinks to maintain normal blood glucose levels. 
  • Reducing the consumption of fatty foods is also recommended for preventing obesity, which is a common cause of ED. 
  • They should avoid smoking and limit their alcohol intake to avoid the adverse impact of these unhealthy habits on their sexual health. 
  • Regular exercise is highly recommended to lose weight, improve mental health, and increase cardiac efficiency. 

These benefits of exercises can help to eliminate the common underlying causes of ED and help diabetic men get and maintain erections for a longer duration.   

Summary

It is possible to enjoy your sex life and get erections by using Viagra and adopting healthy lifestyle habits. 

Men with diabetes are advised to consult a physician to learn more about the efficacy of Viagra in the management of ED and use it as recommended to restore sexual pleasure.

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