Statins can boost middle-aged men’s erections by 43%. Cholesterol-busting drugs are taken by millions of men worldwide. The study showed they can improve erectile function scores by 43% which is half the improvement seen if men took Viagra – the usual treatment. Statin pills improve blood flow by breaking down plaques in blood vessels. The cholesterol-busting drugs are already taken by millions of men worldwide to reduce risk of heart disease. But scientists have now discovered that the 5p pills can also help beat impotence. Two-thirds of men over the age of 40 suffer from some degree of erectile dysfunction, and many of these men will also be eligible for statins because of their high cholesterol.Experts hope the findings, unveiled at a gathering of 32,000 heart doctors in Rome, will help persuade more men at risk of cardiovascular disease to consider taking statins.
Speaking at the European Society of Cardiology congress in Rome, Dr Samentzas said: ‘The findings offer an extra motivation for patients considering whether to take statins. They can help boost their heart and their erections. He said the pills were unlikely to help men who had healthy levels of cholesterol. Professor Jeremy Pearson, associate medical director of the British Heart Foundation, said the results were reassuring. ‘In the past there has been concern that taking statins might contribute to erectile dysfunction, ‘This small study adds to the small body of evidence that taking statins could actually be useful in reducing erectile dysfunction. A larger more definitive study is needed to confirm these finding, however, this should be reassuring for male patients taking statins, who need not worry that taking their statins might cause erectile dysfunction.’ Men given the pills saw their erectile function scores improve by 43 per cent. Professor Charalambos Vlachopoulos, a Greek cardiologist, and co-author of Europe’s cholesterol guidelines, said the pills improve blood flow. ‘One way it works is that it may shrink the plaque [cholesterol build up] so the blood flow is boosted because the vessels are not as narrow. ‘The other is that statins improve vessel health, so more blood can come through. Statins have been used since the 1980s to help reduce cholesterol, slashing the risk of heart death.