Erectile dysfunction (ED) is common with aging. Formerly ED treatment was offered mainly by urologists, but the approval and widespread use of phosphodiesterase inhibitors has enabled primary care clinicians to provide targeted ED treatment. Although large, multicenter clinical trials have shown efficacy and safety with these drugs, they are ineffective in 30–35% of men, may cause sideeffects, and do not improve the underlying pathology. A thorough understanding of erectile physiology and causes of ED and a comprehensive treatment plan addressing all contributing factors may be more effective than pharmaceutical management and may improve aspects of psychological and physical health beyond erectile problems.
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