Erectile Dysfunction Largely Goes Untreated, Study Finds

Most men with erectile dysfunction don't receive treatment for the condition, according to a new study.

The findings, presented at a meeting of the European Association of Urology, shows that only about a quarter of men who have problems maintaining an erection actually receive medical treatment for it.

The study is based on 12 months of data from 2010 to 2011 that included 87,600,000 men. Of those, 6,228,509 had erectile dysfunction.

But when researchers went to go see how many of those men received treatment (which is based on them filling a prescription for a typical ED treatment, including injection or urethral prostaglandins or androgen replacement, or phosphodiesterase type 5 inhibitor), only 25.4 percent of the men were treated.

According to WebMD, erectile dysfunction affects 15 to 25 percent of men age 65 and 5 percent of men age 40. Causes of the condition include blood flow conditions, illnesses and medications, as well as psychological conditions like anxiety and depression.

Recently, HuffPost 50 reported on how erectile dysfunction is actually a significant risk factor for heart disease.

"The likelihood of having heart disease at some point is two to three times higher in those who have ED than those who don't," Dr. Mehdi Shishehbor, a cardiology specialist at Cleveland Clinic, told HuffPost 50. That's because arteries in the penis are smaller than arteries connecting to the heart, meaning if there are blockages, those penile arteries will be affected first.