Men who take nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs three times per day for more than 3 months are 2.4 times more likely to have erectile dysfunction than men who do not take the drugs regularly, say researchers from several California locations of Kaiser Permanente.
The observational study used electronic health records to examine NSAID use and ED in an ethnically diverse population of 80,966 men aged 45 to 69 years throughout California. After controlling for age, race, ethnicity, smoking status, and certain health conditions, the researchers found that ED was 1.4 times more likely among regular NSAID users compared with men who did not take the drugs regularly. This association was consistent across all age groups.
"This study is a great example of how we work to understand the safety and effectiveness of what we recommend for our patients," said senior author Steven J. Jacobsen, MD, PhD, of Kaiser Permanente Southern California, Pasadena. "We went into this study thinking we would find the opposite effect: that NSAIDs would have a protective effect because they protect against heart disease, which is also linked to ED. The next step is to dive a bit deeper to understand the underlying physiology of what might be happening with these drugs."
Results from the study were published online in the Journal of Urology (Feb. 18, 2011).