Prevalence and risk factors for erectile dysfunction in Korean men: results of an epidemiological study

J Sex Med. 2007 Sep;4(5):1269-76. doi: 10.1111/j.1743-6109.2007.00554.x. Epub 2007 Jul 17.


Introduction: The prevalence of erectile dysfunction (ED) and associated risk factors has been described in many countries, but there are still only a few studies from Asia.

Aim: We investigated the prevalences of ED and premature ejaculation (PE) in Korean men and the impact of general health, lifestyle, and psychosocial factors on these conditions.

Methods: To assess ED and PE, 1,570 Korean men aged 40-79 years were interviewed with a self-administered questionnaire on sexual function and the International Index of Erectile Function (IIEF)-5. In addition, blood chemistry was analyzed for each subject.

Main outcome measures: The prevalences of ED and PE were obtained from self-reported ED, IIEF-5 scoring, EF (erectile function) domain scoring, and self-reported intravaginal ejaculatory latency time (IELT). The data were analyzed for the presence of risk factors and the relationship of general health, lifestyle, and psychosocial factors with ED.

Results: The prevalences of ED among Korean men were 13.4% (self-reported ED) and 32.4% (IIEF-5 score <or= 17), and PE prevalences were 11% (IELT <or= 2-min) and 33.1% (IELT <or= 5-min). ED was more prevalent in the subject groups with older age, lower income, or lower education, and in subjects without a spouse. ED prevalence was positively associated with risk factors such as diabetes, hypertension, heart disease, psychological stress, and obesity. Levels of serum hemoglobin (Hb) A1c, triglycerides, testosterone, or dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate (DHEA-S) were significantly different between the ED and non-ED groups.

Conclusions: The prevalences of ED and PE in Korean men were 13.4% (self-reported ED) and 11% (IELT <or= 2-min), respectively. Risk factors and other socioeconomic and mental health factors were associated with ED prevalence. Biochemical factors such as HbA1c, triglycerides, testosterone, and DHEA-S were significantly related to ED prevalence.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Chi-Square Distribution
  • Ejaculation
  • Erectile Dysfunction / epidemiology*
  • Health Status*
  • Humans
  • Korea / epidemiology
  • Life Style*
  • Male
  • Men's Health*
  • Middle Aged
  • Prevalence
  • Risk Factors
  • Severity of Illness Index*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires