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ORIGINAL RESEARCH—EPIDEMIOLOGY: The Prevalence of Erectile Dysfunction Among Hypertensive and Prehypertensive Men Aged 25–40 Years


Rafi J. Heruti, MD, Reuth Medical Center—Rehabilitation, Shderot hachayil 2, Tel-Aviv 61092, Israel. Tel: 972-3-6893713; Fax: 972-3-6893712; E-mail:


Introduction.  Erectile dysfunction (ED) and hypertension (HTN) are common and associated among men aged 40–70 years. Data on the prevalence of ED among younger hypertensive and prehypertensive men are limited.

Aim.  To study the prevalence of ED in a large-scale population of hypertensive and prehypertensive men aged 25–40 years.

Main Outcome Measures.  ED severity, systolic blood pressures (SBPs), diastolic blood pressures (DBPs), and mean arterial blood pressures (MAPs).

Methods.  Israel Defense Force personnel, aged 25 years and older, go through routine health checks at the Staff Periodic Health Examination Center (SPEC) every 3–5 years, including measuring blood pressure and completing the Sexual Health Inventory for Men (SHIM) questionnaire in order to detect HTN and ED, respectively, and assess its severity. Pre-HTN was defined as SBP 120–139 mm Hg or DBP 80–89 mm Hg. HTN was defined as SBP ≥140 mm Hg and/or DBP ≥90 mm Hg.

Results.  During 2001–2004, an overall of 11,252 men, aged 25–40 years, reported to the SPEC, and 5,860 (52.1%) men filled out the SHIM questionnaire. Among responders to the SHIM questionnaire, 1,278 (21.8%) men had low scores (≤21), suggesting ED. Overall, 3021 (51.6%) men had pre-HTN and 557 (9.5%) men had HTN. The prevalence of ED was similar among men with HTN, men with pre-HTN, and men with normal blood pressure: 22.9% vs. 21.3% vs. 22.3%, respectively. In addition, SBPs, DBPs, and MAPs were not associated with the SHIM scores among all men.

Conclusions.  The prevalence of ED is not increased among hypertensive and prehypertensive men compared with normotensive men aged 25–40 years. Moreover, higher blood pressures are not associated with worse erections among all men in this age group. Apparently, it takes years for HTN to cause ED. Heruti RJ, Sharabi Y, Arbel Y, Shochat T, Swartzon M, Brenner G, and Justo D. The prevalence of erectile dysfunction among hypertensive and prehypertensive men ages 25–40 years. J Sex Med 2007;4:596–601.