Erectile dysfunction and coronary artery disease: an association of higher risk in younger men

J Sex Med. 2011 May;8(5):1445-53. doi: 10.1111/j.1743-6109.2011.02224.x. Epub 2011 Mar 2.


Introduction: The association between erectile dysfunction (ED) and coronary artery disease (CAD) has been described in various settings, but it is unclear if there is an independent interaction with age.

Aim: To investigate the interaction of age in the association between ED and CAD.

Methods: This case-control study was conducted among 242 patients referred for elective coronary angiography. One hundred fourteen patients with significant CAD were identified as cases and 128 controls without significant CAD. ED was evaluated by the erectile function domain of the International Index of Erectile Function (IIEF) questionnaire, determined by a score ≤ 25 points.

Main outcome measures: Significant CAD was based on stenosis of 50% or greater in the diameter in at least one of the major epicardial vessels or their branches. The analysis was conducted in the whole sample and according to the age strata, controlling for the effects of cardiovascular risk factors, testosterone, and C-reactive protein. Results. Patients had on average 58.3 ± 8.9 years. CAD and ED were associated exclusively in patients younger than 60 years (ED in 68.8% of patients with CAD vs. 46.7% of patients without CAD, P = 0.009). The association was independent of cardiovascular risk factors, testosterone and C-reactive protein (risk ratio 2.3, 95% confidence interval from 1.04 to 5.19). Severity of CAD was higher in patients younger than 60 years with ED.

Conclusions: Men with less than 60 years of age who report ED presented a higher risk of having chronic CAD and more severe disease diagnosed by coronary angiography.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Age Factors
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • C-Reactive Protein / analysis
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Chi-Square Distribution
  • Coronary Angiography
  • Coronary Artery Disease / complications*
  • Erectile Dysfunction / etiology*
  • Humans
  • Logistic Models
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Odds Ratio
  • Risk Factors
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Statistics, Nonparametric
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Testosterone / blood


  • Testosterone
  • C-Reactive Protein