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Erectile Dysfunction Linked To Severe Periodontal Disease
March 20, 2013

By Nancy Volkers
InteliHealth News Service

INTELIHEALTH - Men with erectile dysfunction (ED) are more than three times as likely as other men to have severe periodontal disease, says a study.

The study was done in Turkey. It included 162 men between ages 30 and 40. Of the men, 80 had problems getting or maintaining an erection. The others did not.

Just over half (53%) of the men with ED and 23% of those without it had severe periodontal disease.

Men with ED also had more decayed, missing or filled teeth than men in the other group.

Many of the same researchers published a study in February on whether treatment for periodontal disease could improve symptoms of ED. Every man in this study had ED and severe periodontal disease. Half received treatment; the other half did not.

One month later, the treated group had healthier gums. But they had no significant improvement in ED symptoms. Three months after treatment, though, the treated group showed more improvement in ED symptoms than the untreated group.

Erectile dysfunction affects as many as 30 million American men. It usually has a physical cause. Anything that injures the nerves or impairs blood flow to the area can contribute to ED.

Similar factors, including smoking and diabetes, increase the risk of both periodontal disease and ED. Periodontal disease has been linked with other conditions, such as heart disease, that involve inflammation and impaired blood flow.

The current study was published in the March issue of the Journal of Sex Medicine. The February study was published in that month's issue of the Journal of Clinical Periodontology.

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