Relationship Between Age, Comorbidity, and the Prevalence of Erectile Dysfunction.

Erectile dysfunction (ED) increases with age. Remarkably, the relationship between age and the risk of ED has only been described in crude categories, such as risk for men aged 50-59 yr, without taking comorbidities into account.

To understand how the risk of patient-reported ED varies according to age and comorbidity status.

This cross-sectional study included a cohort of 17 250 patients with prostate cancer who completed the International Index of Erectile Function erectile function domain (IIEF-EF) questionnaire before any prostate treatment.

We created a logistic regression model to predict the probability of ED using age and comorbidities such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and hypertension as predictors. We used age as a nonlinear term to allow a curvilinear relationship between age and ED.

The prevalence of patient-reported ED among men without any comorbidities increased from 10% to 79% from the age of 40 and 80 yr. The risk of ED increased sharply with comorbidity: the probability of ED for 50- and 75-yr-old individuals was 20% and 68% for healthy men, but 41% and 85% for those with hypertension, obesity, and diabetes. Men with several comorbidities have the same risk of ED as that of healthy men 15-25 yr older. Limitations include a healthier-than-average patient group and lack of information about some comorbidities and the severity of comorbidities.

Our results allow us to better understand how the risk of ED changes with age and comorbidities. Further research should evaluate the impact of other risk factors not considered in the present study and should take risk factor severity into account.

Our study shows how the probability of erectile dysfunction (ED) changes with increasing age, analyzed alone and when taking into account the presence of other risk factors for this condition (eg, diabetes, high blood pressure, and cardiovascular disease). Our results help in better understanding the probability of ED for men with and without comorbidities.

European urology focus. 2022 Aug 25 [Epub ahead of print]

Francesco Pellegrino, Daniel D Sjoberg, Amy L Tin, Nicole E Benfante, Alberto Briganti, Francesco Montorsi, James A Eastham, John P Mulhall, Andrew J Vickers

Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, New York, NY, USA; Division of Oncology/Unit of Urology, IRCCS San Raffaele Hospital, Urological Research Institute, Milan, Italy. Electronic address: ., Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, New York, NY, USA., Division of Oncology/Unit of Urology, IRCCS San Raffaele Hospital, Urological Research Institute, Milan, Italy., Urology Service, Department of Surgery, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, New York, NY, USA.

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