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Erectile dysfunction: this activity linked to a sedentary lifestyle could increase the risks according to a study

  • March 22, 2024
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And erectile dysfunction can often be experienced badly, they are in reality quite common and affect approximately 1 in 10 men during their lifetime, according to the Health Insurance website. Erectile dysfunction is characterized by difficulty maintaining an erection sufficient for satisfactory sexual intercourse. Among risk factors likely to promote THE erectile problems, we find in particular testosterone deficiency, obesity, or even mental health problems. But certain activities, or rather a lack of physical exercise, could also increase the risk of suffering from erectile dysfunction.

This is what was investigated a study published on March 20, 2024 in the journal Andrologywith the aim of exploring the link between sedentary behavior during leisure time and erectile dysfunction. For their work, the scientists analyzed data from more than 200,000 men aged 40 to 69 while they engaged in various leisure activities, such as watching television, using a computer, or even driving for pleasure. Then they measured their levels of testosterone and other sex hormones, as well as their feelings of depression and anxiety.

Erection problems: every 1.2 hours of computer use increases the risk by more than 3

At the end of the study, the researchers noticed that participants with a higher genetic susceptibility to computer use in their free time were associated with a higher risk of erectile dysfunction. Indeed, they noted that every 1.2 hours increase on the computer was linked to a 3.57 times higher risk of erectile dysfunction. But the researchers added that this helplessness, favored by the computer, could be compensated by moderate physical activity.

However, scientists have not demonstrated the same association between increased risk of erectile dysfunction and other leisure activities studied, such as watching television or driving. According to them, this means that physical inactivity is not the only explanation for this association between computer use and erection problems.

Erectile problems: how to explain the link between computer use and erection problems?

While the researchers did not establish a link between computer use and depression, anxiety, or markers of blood vessel health, they found that it was associated with lower levels follicle-stimulating d’hormone (or FSH). Along with testosterone, this hormone is responsible for stimulating sperm production in men, which when disrupted can lead to erectile dysfunction. Furthermore, scientists have also recalled that low levels of FSH are likely to promote a drop in libido, infertility and a lack of energy.

According to the researchers, this study demonstrates a “positive causal association between computer use and risk of erectile dysfunction”. However, this work only focused on men under the age of 70, the age at which erection problems are most common. This is why scientists insist on the need to carry out further research in order to prove a “definitive causal association”.

Sources :

  • A Mendelian randomization study on causal effects of leisure sedentary behavior on the risk of erectile dysfunction – Andrology – 20 mars 2024
  • Does sedentary leisure time affect men’s risk of erectile dysfunction? – Wiley – 20 mars 2024
  • Definition, frequency and causes of erectile dysfunction – Ameli.fr
author avatar
Emilie Biechy-Tournade