Subclinical endothelial dysfunction and low-grade inflammation play roles in the development of erectile dysfunction in young men with low risk of coronary heart disease.Int J Androl 2012; 35(5):653-9IJ
The purpose of this study is to investigate the possible underlying pathogenesis of erectile dysfunction(ED) in young men with low risk of coronary heart disease and no well-known aetiology. To conduct this study, 122 patients with ED under the age of 40 were enrolled, along with 33 age-matched normal control subjects. The patients with ED had significantly higher levels of systolic blood pressure (SBP), total cholesterol and triglyceride, high sensitivity C-reactive protein (hs-CRP), greater carotid intima-media thickness (CIMT) and Framingham risk score (FRS) than the control group, though all of these values were within the respective normal range. Further, the brachial artery flow- mediated vasodilation (FMD) values were significantly lower in ED patients and correlated positively with the severity of ED (r = 0.714, p < 0.001). When these significant factors were studied in the multivariate logistic regression model, FMD, SBP, hs-CRP and FRS remained the statistical significance. The receiver-operating characteristic (ROC) analysis demonstrated that FMD had a high ability to predict ED in young male with low FRS [area under the curve (AUC) 0.921, p < 0.001]. The cutoff value of FMD <10.25% had sensitivity of 82.8% and specificity of 100% for diagnosis of ED. FRS and hs- CRP were also proven to be predictors of ED (AUC 0.812, p < 0.001; AUC 0.645, p = 0.011, respectively). The results of this study validated that subclinical endothelial dysfunction and low-grade inflammation may be the underlying pathogenesis of ED with no well-known aetiology. Young patients complaining of ED should be screened for cardiovascular risk factors and possible subclinical atherosclerosis. Measurement of FMD, hs-CRP and FRS can improve our ability to predict and treat ED, as well as subclinical cardiovascular disease early for young male.