July 11, 2013

Sexual Dysfunction in Men with T1D More than 50 Years


sexual-dysfunctionBeing a 50 Year Medalist comes with bragging rights. It means you’ve lived 50 years or more with T1D. However, according to a new study published in Diabetes Care, the men in this club who have heart disease may be less outspoken about something else.

Diabetes complications arise with vascular dysfunction. It is also the dubious distinction leading to erectile dysfunction. To add insult to injury, it’s also a predictor of cardiovascular disease (CVD) in males over age 40.

Joslin Medalists are people who’ve lived 50 years or more with T1D. Joslin Medalists have low rates of small but not large vessel complications. This study aims to identify the association of sexual dysfunction (SD) with CVD in Joslin Medalists.

Of 301 males in the Medalist Study, just under 70% reported a history of SD. Men who reported SD were relatively free of microvasscular complications. The findings suggest that SD may predict CVD in those with long duration T1D.

On the brighter side, microvascular complications are not all that prevalent in 50 year Medalists. Pump the brakes on the large vessels, though. It appears that large vessel disease due to plaque is the primary issue, more than microvascular issues, due to dysfunction in the nervous system.

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