Having erectile dysfunction may make your working life harder
A study of 52,000 men from eight different countries indicates that erectile problems affect the mental well-being of men dealing with the problem.
According to the research, the problem is associated with a loss of productivity at work and a decrease in health-related quality of life.
Erectile dysfunction is defined as a difficulty in achieving or maintaining an erection during sexual activity over a period of at least three consecutive months.
The study, which received funding from Pfizer and was published in International Journal of Clinical Practice, used stratified random sampling to examine data from national health and wellness surveys (2015-2016) of more than 52,000 men aged 40 to 70 in France, Italy, Brazil, China, Germany, Spain, the United Kingdom, and the United States.
The researchers relied on self-reported data from the participants and evaluated their difficulties in achieving or maintaining an erection for a period of six months. The prevalence of erectile dysfunction globally came to 49.7%, with Italy at the top of the list (54.7%).
Compared to men without difficulties of this type, those who reported being affected by erectile dysfunction showed significantly higher levels of absenteeism from work (7.1% against 3.2%), lower productivity at work (24.8% against 11.2%), and being less active outside of work (28.6% against 14.5%).
"Erectile dysfunction poses a significant burden with respect to work productivity and health-related quality of life, with greater severity associated with worse outcomes. Better management and earlier detection may help reduce this burden, especially in countries reporting a strong association between erectile dysfunction and poor economic and health outcomes," conclude the authors of the study.
The study is limited in scope by the fact that it is principally based on self-reporting by participants.