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Your Sex Life: Male Reproductive Disorders

Vasectomy, impotence and prostate problems – these are three distressing issues that most people, men in particular, do not want to talk about. Let’s take a closer look at all three, as it is very important to be well informed about these procedures and conditions and the necessary treatments.

A vasectomy is a permanent and efficient form of contraception. The procedure involves blocking and cutting the tubes which carry the sperm, ensuring it does not enter the semen. As with any surgical procedure there are various factors to consider. Research shows that it is 99.85% effective and afterwards no other form of contraception is needed. The procedure is simple and takes approximately 30 mins, thus men can resume normal day to day activities within a few days. Men should not worry about a decrease in libido as this procedure prevents sperm being released from the penis but does not affect release of testosterone. Finally, a vasectomy can be reversed if a man decides to have more children.

There are also a few negative aspects to take into account. A vasectomy does not protect both partners against STDs, and despite the very high success rate there is always the chance of an unplanned pregnancy. Vasectomy reversal is a long and expensive procedure and may not always be successful. Pregnancy might be delayed for up to a year after an effective reversal.

Impotence, also known as Erectile Dysfunction (ED), refers to either the inability to maintain an erection or to achieve ejaculation, or both. There are many factors which can contribute to this disorder. Research reveals that 50% of men between the ages of 40 and 70 suffer from ED. Age plays a big factor, as the older you get, the higher the risk. It is also noted that men that lead healthier lifestyles with a consistently healthy diet and exercise regime are less likely to suffer from ED. A few of the negative consequences of ED include additional stress, low self-esteem and depression.

People who suffer from emotional disorders such as stress, anxiety or depression would be more likely to suffer from ED, as in order to achieve an erection, there is a certain level of excitement involved. This would be difficult to achieve due to these emotional concerns. Furthermore, increased drug or alcohol use can also contribute to impotence.

There are several endocrine diseases and neurological disorders that can increase the risk of impotence such as diabetes, multiple sclerosis, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, temporal lobe epilepsy and stroke, as well as a variety of medications that can create a similar risk. If you feel that medication is affecting you in this way, check with your doctor. Never stop taking medication without first consulting a professional.

If you or someone you know suffers from ED, do not worry as there are treatments that can help, such as prescription medications or alternatively more natural remedies such as ginseng or acupuncture. Lastly, make good lifestyle choices by including a healthy diet and more exercise, avoiding alcohol, drugs and smoking, as well as reducing stress and anxiety.

Always consult a doctor before using any medication or natural remedies. If you feel that you may be suffering from ED, consult a doctor as there may be an underlying medical condition that is contributing to this. Getting older does not necessarily result in impotence. A large percentage of men never suffer from ED and those that do can lead a normal sex life with the help of medication or lifestyle changes.

Lastly, prostate problems are also a common concern amongst men over the age of 50. The prostate gland is part of the male reproductive system; it is the size of a walnut and is located between the bladder and the penis. Its main function is to secrete prostate fluid which mixes with sperm to create semen.

The most common conditions associated with the prostate are prostate enlargement, inflammation and cancer. Research shows that approximately a third of men over the age of 50 suffer from prostate enlargement. This puts pressure on the urethra which may affect the frequency and ease of urination. There are certain medications that can be used to reduce the size of the prostate, helping the bladder muscles to relax.

Prostate inflammation, also known as prostatitis, commonly affects men between the ages of 30 and 50. Symptoms include pain in the pelvis, genitals, back and lower buttocks, difficulty and pain when urinating or ejaculating. This too can be treated with medication that will help to relax the prostate muscles and/or shrink the prostate gland – this should be effective within a few weeks or months, however it can take longer.

Prostate cancer is most common in men aged 50 years and over. The risk is increased if there is a history of prostate cancer in the immediate family. The symptoms are very similar to those of prostate enlargement which can make it difficult to distinguish between the two. Prostate cancer progresses very slowly, so if it is detected early there is time to monitor and treat it effectively.

These are alarming topics, however there is treatment available for all of them. Please consult your doctor if you feel that you are suffering from any of the above disorders or conditions so that you can receive the necessary treatment and thus lead a healthier and happier life.