Erectile Dysfunction and Nitric Oxide

Erection physiology was studied in the late twentieth century, after discovery of important role of nitric oxide in vasodilatation process. Scientists believe, not without reason reason, that it is nitric oxide that plays crucial role in erectile function. Such a significant role of nitric oxide is connected with the fact that it stimulates necessary cavernous bodies trabecular muscle relaxation and this in its turn contributes to penile erection.

For discoveries concerning nitric oxide as a signaling molecule in cardiovascular system – in 1998 Furchgott, Ignarro and Murad (all from the USA) were awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology Committee.

The first practical application of research on nitric oxide (NO) results has led to emergence of a well-known drug – Viagra.

Nitric oxide (NO) is a “hormone” produced by internal wall cells (endothelium) of vessels. Due to the fact that nitric oxide has a direct connection to vascular smooth muscle expansion (vasodilation) and relaxation, it helps to regulate blood pressure. Nitric oxide prevents blood clots formation. Nitric oxide is involved in various processes of immune, nervous and reproductive systems. Nitric oxide is used by immune system killer-cells to destroy malignant tumor cells and kill bacteria.

erectile dysfunction

The following diseases are associated with impaired metabolism and biosynthesis of nitric oxide (NO):

  • arterial hypertension;
  • Alzheimer’s disease;
  • bronchial asthma;
  • ischemic heart disease (cardiac angina);
  • myocardial infarction;
  • epilepsy;
  • Parkinson’s disease;
  • neurotic depression;
  • diabetes;
  • erectile dysfunction, and others.

NO (nitric oxide) is an important bioconductor and can cause at cellular level a large number of positive changes that lead to improvement in immune and nervous, blood circulation systems. In practice, effects of nitric oxide may find its use in treatment of cardiac and vascular diseases. For example, with the help of nitric oxide impaired by atherosclerosis blood vessels can be restored again, blood circulation can be improved and blood pressure – normalized. That is why My Canadian Pharmacy researchers consider nitric oxide (existence and its action) as a signaling molecule in circulatory system, and base on that their work on new drugs development for cardiovascular diseases treatment.

Nitric Oxide for Erectile Dysfucntion Treatment

The first drug approved for hypertension and ischemic heart disease treatment, which effect is associated with increased production of nitric oxide, became nebivolol.

Nebivolol is the most modern anti-hypertensive drug of beta1-blockers group, which appeared in the late 20th century, used for hypertension and ischemic heart disease treatment. Nebivolol has unique vasodilating properties associated with increased production of nitric oxide by inner wall (endothelium) of vessels.

“Viagra-like” effect of nebivolol was revealed in a study conducted by Doumas et al in 2005. The study showed improvement of erectile function at hypertensive men who were transferred from treatment with beta-blockers of previous generations (atenolol, metoprolol, bisoprolol) to the most modern beta-blocker – nebivolol. At 61% of men after discontinuation of beta-blockers of previous generations (atenolol, metoprolol, bisoprolol), on the background of beginning of nebivolol reception, erectile function was restored, and at 39% of men – erectile function improved.

Thus, even before first signs of impaired blood flow in heart muscle, first manifestation of common vascular disorder may be violation of erectile function. As it was proved, that those men who have no problems with achieving orgasm, have much lower chances to obtain fatal cardiovascular diseases. Therefore, normal sex life can be considered as an integral indicator of men’s health.

At present time, men began to pay more attention to their health. Therefore, a man, who wants to restore order in his sex life, needs to undergo a comprehensive examination, as this will help to establish or exclude possibility of effects on sexual function of certain disorders and choose effective therapy.

An important aspect is correct evaluation of influence on sexual function by drugs, given to patients for other diseases. Unfortunately, at chronic diseases, such as arterial hypertension, which itself contributes to erectile dysfunction development, taking certain medications is accompanied by sexual dysfunction, which often becomes the reason that patients stop treatment on their own. As a result of lack of arterial hypertension treatment, erectile dysfunction progresses, and significantly increases risk of heart attack or blood stroke.

However, the situation is not hopeless, as currently there are drugs that can not only maintain blood pressure at normal level and reduce myocardial ischemia, but also have beneficial effect on sexual function.

An example of such drug can be nebivolol, that maintains blood pressure at normal level, reduces frequency of cardiac angina attacks, and also has positive effect on erectile function.