Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Erectile dysfunction may signal early atherosclerosis

12.10.2005


Study of otherwise healthy men reveals indications of coronary artery disease



Erectile dysfunction may be a sign that coronary artery disease is developing, even in men without typical risk factors, according to a new study in the Oct. 18, 2005, issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

"We think that erectile dysfunction represents the ’tip of the iceberg’ of a systemic vascular disorder; thus potentially preceding severe cardiovascular events. Erectile dysfunction should be part of a cardiovascular risk assessment. These patients should be considered at high risk for coronary artery disease and should have high priority for aggressive treatment," said Emilio Chiurlia, Ph.D. from the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia in Modena, Italy.


The researchers studied 70 men with erectile dysfunction and 73 control subjects who were of similar age and race (all Caucasian), and had similar coronary risk factor scores according to estimates published by the National Cholesterol Education Panel III. None of the men had symptoms of coronary atherosclerosis.

The men with erectile dysfunction had higher levels of C-reactive protein (an emerging coronary risk factor), they were more likely to have abnormal blood vessel responses to changes in blood flow (as measured by flow mediated dilation), and more of them had coronary artery calcifications detected on coronary CT scans.

"When a man is diagnosed with erectile dysfunction, clinicians should be aware that erectile dysfunction would represent an early clinical manifestation of a diffuse subclinical vascular disease and coronary artery disease is the most important problem that needs to be investigated. The smaller penile arteries suffer obstruction from plaque burden earlier than the larger coronary arteries hence erectile dysfunction may be symptomatic before a coronary event," Dr. Chiurlia said.

Dr. Chiurlia noted that this study involved only a small number of men and did not follow them over time to see which ones actually developed heart disease.

"We need prospective studies addressing the precise role of erectile dysfunction as a marker of cardiovascular disease," he said.

While awaiting the results of such future studies, he said erectile dysfunction should raise suspicions about early atherosclerosis, even in men who would not otherwise be considered at high risk.

"In our opinion, erectile dysfunction should be considered, like diabetes, a ’cardiovascular equivalent,’" Dr. Chiurlia said.

Renke Maas, M.D., from the University-Hospital Hamburg-Eppendorf in Hamburg, Germany, who was not connected with this research, agreed with the main conclusion of the study.

"The present study by Chiurlia et al. lends strong support to the notion that erectile dysfunction may be an early warning sign of clinically-silent coronary artery disease. Despite limitations set by sample size and the cross-sectional study design with a long list of exclusion criteria, it is a strength of the present work that it assesses major aspects connecting erectile dysfunction and more generalized vascular disease in one study," Dr. Maas said.

Paul Schoenhagen, M.D., from the Cleveland Clinic Foundation in Cleveland, Ohio, who also was not connected with the research, said it provides evidence of related problems in two different regions of the arterial tree.

"These results demonstrate the systemic nature of atherosclerosis and the relationship to an inflammatory process of the vessel wall. This understanding of atherosclerosis increasingly allows early interventions aimed at the prevention of disease complications," Dr. Schoenhagen said.

Amy Murphy | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.acc.org

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht Some brain tumors may respond to immunotherapy, new study suggests
11.12.2018 | Columbia University Irving Medical Center

nachricht Climate change and air pollution damaging health and causing millions of premature deaths
30.11.2018 | International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA)

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Data use draining your battery? Tiny device to speed up memory while also saving power

The more objects we make "smart," from watches to entire buildings, the greater the need for these devices to store and retrieve massive amounts of data quickly without consuming too much power.

Millions of new memory cells could be part of a computer chip and provide that speed and energy savings, thanks to the discovery of a previously unobserved...

Im Focus: An energy-efficient way to stay warm: Sew high-tech heating patches to your clothes

Personal patches could reduce energy waste in buildings, Rutgers-led study says

What if, instead of turning up the thermostat, you could warm up with high-tech, flexible patches sewn into your clothes - while significantly reducing your...

Im Focus: Lethal combination: Drug cocktail turns off the juice to cancer cells

A widely used diabetes medication combined with an antihypertensive drug specifically inhibits tumor growth – this was discovered by researchers from the University of Basel’s Biozentrum two years ago. In a follow-up study, recently published in “Cell Reports”, the scientists report that this drug cocktail induces cancer cell death by switching off their energy supply.

The widely used anti-diabetes drug metformin not only reduces blood sugar but also has an anti-cancer effect. However, the metformin dose commonly used in the...

Im Focus: New Foldable Drone Flies through Narrow Holes in Rescue Missions

A research team from the University of Zurich has developed a new drone that can retract its propeller arms in flight and make itself small to fit through narrow gaps and holes. This is particularly useful when searching for victims of natural disasters.

Inspecting a damaged building after an earthquake or during a fire is exactly the kind of job that human rescuers would like drones to do for them. A flying...

Im Focus: Topological material switched off and on for the first time

Key advance for future topological transistors

Over the last decade, there has been much excitement about the discovery, recognised by the Nobel Prize in Physics only two years ago, that there are two types...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

ICTM Conference 2019: Digitization emerges as an engineering trend for turbomachinery construction

12.12.2018 | Event News

New Plastics Economy Investor Forum - Meeting Point for Innovations

10.12.2018 | Event News

EGU 2019 meeting: Media registration now open

06.12.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Data use draining your battery? Tiny device to speed up memory while also saving power

14.12.2018 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Tangled magnetic fields power cosmic particle accelerators

14.12.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

In search of missing worlds, Hubble finds a fast evaporating exoplanet

14.12.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>