Although it has been recognized that erectile dysfunction (ED) and coronary artery disease share many of the same risk factors—smoking, dyslipidemia, diabetes and hypertension—just in the past few years several new studies now suggest that ED is an important early marker of the presence of coronary artery disease. Recent analyses suggest that ED symptoms occur prior to coronary artery disease symptoms and may be a predictor of future major cardiovascular events. Some of these new studies also suggest that ED is an independent risk factor for predicting cardiovascular events—that is independent of other well-established risk factors. Taken together, these new studies suggest that when a patient presents with ED, the patient should be questioned about cardiac health and cardiovascular risk factors. If cardiovascular risk factors are identified, they should be worked up and aggressively treated—as treatment of these risk factors may be life-saving.
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Kloner, R. Erectile dysfunction as a predictor of cardiovascular disease. Int J Impot Res 20, 460–465 (2008). https://doi.org/10.1038/ijir.2008.20
- erectile dysfunction
- coronary artery disease
- cardiovascular risk factors
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