Determinants of erectile dysfunction risk in a large series of Italian men attending andrology clinics

Eur Urol. 2004 Jan;45(1):87-91. doi: 10.1016/j.eururo.2003.08.005.


Objective: To assess determinants of ED in men who asked for a free of charge andrologic consultation during a week focused on andrologic prevention in Italy.

Methods: Men were invited to attend 178 participating andrology centers for a free of charge visit for counselling about urologic or andrologic conditions. Data were recorded with a simple questionnaire used by all centers.

Results: 2499 (19.9%) were diagnosed having ED. The frequency of ED increased with age, ranging from 4.6% in men under 25 years, to 37.6% in men over 74. In comparison with men with primary education the OR of ED was 0.8 (95% CI 0.7-0.9) in men with secondary education and 0.7 (95% CI 0.6-0.9) in those with university degree. After adjusting for age, the risk of ED was significantly higher in men consuming more than 3 glasses/day of alcoholic drinking (OR 1.4, 95% CI 1.1-2.0), in subjects smoking more than 10 cigarettes/day (OR 1.2, CI 95% 1.1-1.4) and in former smokers (OR 1.2, CI 95% 1.1-1.4). Men performing at least two hours per week of physical activity had a decreased risk of ED (OR 0.8, CI 95% 0.7-0.9). We found an increased risk of ED in men with diabetes (OR 1.2, 95% CI 1.1-1.4), hypertension (OR 1.3, 95% CI 1.1-1.4), cardiopathy (OR 1.5, 95% CI 1.3-1.8) and hypercholesterolemia (OR 1.4, 95% CI 1.2-1.6).

Conclusions: This study provides further data on determinants of ED risk in a large data set and underlines the relationship between ED and cardiovascular diseases.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Ambulatory Care Facilities
  • Erectile Dysfunction / epidemiology*
  • Humans
  • Italy
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Risk Factors
  • Surveys and Questionnaires