Drug therapy and prevalence of erectile dysfunction in the Massachusetts male aging study cohort

Document Type


Date of Original Version



Study Objective. To examine the association of commonly used drugs with erectile dysfunction (ED) at two time points. Design. Population-based, cross-sectional, survey analysis. Participants. Randomly selected cohort of men in the Massachusetts Male Aging Study (MMAS) that included 1476 men for the baseline (1987-1989) and 922 for the follow-up (1995-1997) analyses. Intervention. Crude associations between specific drug categories were examined with X2 statistics. Logistic regression analysis was used to separate the effect of drugs from the influence of heart disease, hypertension, untreated diabetes, or depressive symptoms. Measurements and Main Results. In the MMAS, medical history, current drug use, and erectile function status were ascertained with in-home interviews. In unadjusted analyses, thiazide and nonthiazide diuretics, β-blockers, calcium channel blockers, angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors, benzodiazepines, digitalis, nitrates, 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl coenzyme A reductase inhibitors, and histamine2 receptor antagonists were associated with prevalent ED. Adjustment for comorbidities and health behaviors attenuated these associations, with only nonthiazide diuretics and benzodiazepines remaining statistically significant. Conclusion. Several common drugs may increase prevalence of ED; however, additional data from larger populations are needed to determine whether these associations are independent of underlying health conditions and to explore the effects of dosage and duration of use.

Publication Title, e.g., Journal