A diagnosis of erectile dysfunction is put only by a medical professional. ED is a repeated inability in men to achieve and/or maintain an erection for satisfactory sexual performance for at least three months.
A frank and open communication between the patient and the doctor is essential in making the correct diagnosis of erectile dysfunction. Only a doctor can assess the severity of ED and determine the underlying factor causing it. Doctors usually ask their patients the following questions:
1. Are you suffering from erectile dysfunction or from lack of desire as well? Or from rapid ejaculation?
2. Is erectile dysfunction caused by psychological or physical afflictions? Healthy males usually have reflex erections in the early morning and at night. Men with erectile dysfunction caused by psychological factors such as stress and anxiety usually have these reflex erections. Men with physical underlying afflictions of impotence such as atherosclerosis, diabetes, nerve diseases usually do not have these uncontrolled erections.
3. Does ED result from physical disorder? What disorder causes ED? Such habits as cigarette smoking, drinking alcohol as well as history of heart attacks, strokes, and atherosclerosis can provoke erectile dysfunction. If penile sensation is diminished or there is a bladder dysfunction a doctor may suggest diabetic nerve damage. Lack of sexual libido and gynecomastia may be the signs of low testosterone levels.
4. Are you taking any medications that can contribute to development of erectile dysfunction? Such medications belong to the drug classes of pain relievers, antidepressants or for hair regrowth.
Then your doctor will make a thorough physical examination and adjust special tests to evaluate the severity of ED in each individual case.