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Erectile Dysfunction Health Center

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High Blood Pressure Drugs and Erectile Dysfunction

Blood Pressure Drugs Less Likely to Cause Erectile Dysfunction continued...

In general, alpha-blockers do not often cause erection problems, either. In one study, a small number of men actually had a 100% improvement in their erectile dysfunction after two years on the alpha-blocker Cardura.

Drugs known as ARBs (angiotensin II receptor blockers, like Losartan) are not only unlikely to cause erection problems, but they may actually improve sexual function in men with high blood pressure.

A study published in the American Journal of the Medical Sciences looked at the drug Cozaar, an ARB. At first, just 7% of men and women in the study said they felt sexually satisfied overall. After 12 weeks of Cozaar, about 58% said they were sexually satisfied. The percentage of men who reported having erectile dysfunction dropped from 75% to 12%.

Another study compared the drug Diovan, an ARB, with Coreg, a beta-blocker. The study compared the effect of the two drugs on blood pressure and frequency of sexual intercourse.

The drugs controlled blood pressure equally well. But people who took the ARB reported having sex more often during the 16 weeks of treatment. They said they had sex about eight times a month before, and 10 times a month after. People taking the beta-blocker had sex much less often: eight times a month before, and four times a month after.

What to Do if Medication Causes Erectile Dysfunction

Tell your doctor if you think your blood pressure medication may be causing erectile dysfunction.

If it is your medication, and not just your high blood pressure, switching to another prescription may solve the problem. Never stop taking your medicine without your doctor's OK.

But high blood pressure itself still could be to blame for your erectile dysfunction. In that case, ask about trying an erectile dysfunction drug like Viagra, Cialis, or Levitra.

You should only take these drugs once your blood pressure is under control. They are not safe for men with untreated high blood pressure. They are also not safe for men taking alpha-blockers, or men taking nitrate drugs for heart disease.

WebMD Medical Reference

Reviewed by James Beckerman, MD, FACC on October 31, 2013
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