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Erectile Dysfunction: Glossary of Terms

Alprostadil: A type of drug called a vasodilator. These drugs can increase blood flow by expanding blood vessels.

Antiarrhythmics: Medications used to treat abnormal rhythms of the heart.

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Understanding Erectile Dysfunction -- Prevention

Because erectile dysfunction is often related to poor blood flow, take steps that improve your cardiovascular health. Here are some suggestions to try: Control your blood pressure, cholesterol level, and medical conditions like diabetes, and don't smoke. Avoid alcohol and recreational drugs that may reduce sexual desire or affect your ability to maintain an erection. Exercise. Discuss side effects of medications with your doctor. Some drugs, especially those used to treat high...

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Antibiotics: Any of a class of medicines that kill infection-causing bacteria.

Antidepressants: Medications used to treat depression and other related conditions.

Antihistamines: Medications used to treat allergic reactions or allergies.

Antihypertensives: Medications used to treat high blood pressure.

Anti-inflammatory drugs: Drugs that reduce inflammation (swelling) by modifying the body's immune response.

Anxiety: A feeling of apprehension, often characterized by feelings of stress.

Arteriography: A test given to patients who are candidates for vascular reconstructive surgery. A dye is injected into the artery believed to be damaged so that the artery can be viewed by X-ray.

Atherosclerosis: Also called hardening of the arteries, it is a process in which the walls of the arteries become thickened and hardened, usually due to a buildup of fat deposits.

Avanafil (Stendra): A medication used to treat erectile dysfunction that works by increasing the flow of blood into the penis.

Bladder: The sac that holds urine.

Bloody ejaculation: See Hematospermia.

Cancer: A disease that occurs when abnormal cells in a part of the body divide and grow uncontrolled.

Cavernosography: A test used in conjunction with the dynamic infusion cavernosometry (see below) that involves a dye being injected into the penis. The penis is then X-rayed and doctors are able to visualize a venous leak (see below).

Chemotherapy: In cancer treatment, chemotherapy refers to the use of drugs whose main effect is either to kill or slow the growth of rapidly multiplying cells. Chemotherapy usually includes a combination of drugs.

Cialis: A medication used to treat erectile dysfunction that works by increasing the flow of blood into the penis.

Clinical trial: An organized research program conducted with patients to evaluate a new medical treatment, drug or device.

Complete blood count (CBC): A group of blood tests including hemoglobin concentration, red blood cell count and white blood cell count.

Corpora cavernosa: Two chambers in the penis that run the length of the organ and are filled with spongy tissue. These chambers fill with blood to cause an erection.

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