Survey reveals men are still not taking erectile dysfunction seriously



Sept 06, 2022: Research has revealed an alarming gap in public knowledge relating to erectile dysfunction (ED) and a neglect by many men to seek medical guidance when necessary for the treatment of this urological condition.

Insights from a survey of 1,000 men conducted by The Urology Foundation ahead of Urology Awareness Month this September found that just under 40% (37.91%) of men did not know what erectile dysfunction could be a potential sign of and over a third would not seek advice from a healthcare professional, or did not know what they would do if they knew ED could be a sign of a medical condition.

While the condition is common, with 1 in 10 men in the UK experiencing erectile dysfunction in their lifetime, the stigma associated with the condition has meant that many men feel uncomfortable discussing the issue, with over half (53%), refraining from seeking necessary medical treatment as a result of their anxiety and 20% preferring to miss a month of drinking beer, or their favourite drink, rather than going to see a healthcare professional about ED.

“There is still so much stigma and avoidance around erectile dysfunction”, says Rebecca Porta, Chief Executive of The Urology Foundation. “We need to address this urgently and help men feel more comfortable talking about the condition and taking it more seriously”.

ED prevalence is over 50% in those over 50 years old and increases with a person’s age.[i],[ii] Alarmingly, almost 20% of those surveyed over the age of 55 answered that they would ‘do nothing’ if they had erectile dysfunction, the highest of any age group surveyed.

Avoiding necessary treatment can be particularly dangerous, as the condition can be an indicator of more threatening diseases like coronary heart disease, stroke or diabetes. The Urology Foundation is focusing on this issue during Urology Awareness Month whilst calling for more research funding into  erectile dysfunction and its treatment, and for better education around potential health implications.

“We need to understand more about the behavioural psychology associated with erectile dysfunction” reports Dr. Hussain Alnajjar, Consultant UroAndrologist and ED expert. “ED can have a significant mental toll on men and can affect their perception of manliness, especially if it impacts their fertility, or intimacy with their sexual partner. While these conversations can be uncomfortable to have, it is important not to delay seeing a medical professional as they will be able to find a treatment that is right for you, and identify if your condition is a sign of something more serious.”



If you would like to review the survey data or speak with Rebecca Porta or Dr. Hussain Alnajjar, please contact Rachel Samuel at or on 0208 106 7919.

For more information, please visit

Follow #urologyhealth on social media.

About The Urology Foundation

The Urology Foundation is the UK’s only charity representing all urological diseases including prostate, bladder, kidney and male reproductive cancers and non-malignant conditions including incontinence, urinary tract infections (UTIs), erectile dysfunction and kidney stones.

We are committed to improving outcomes, quality of life and saving lives through investment in ground-breaking research, training in technical skills and innovative technologies and practices, education and awareness. Working with researchers, urologists, nurses and allied healthcare professionals, influencers and decision makers, patients and their families and those with an interest in urological diseases, we are improving the nation’s urology care.

iFeldman HA, Goldstein I, Hatzichristou DG, Krane RJ, McKinlay JB. Impotence and its medical and psychosocial correlates: results of the Massachusetts Male Aging Study. J Urol. 1994 Jan;151(1):54-61. doi: 10.1016/s0022-5347(17)34871-1. PMID: 825483

iiMcCabe MP, et al. (2016) Incidence and prevalence of sexual dysfunction in women and men: A consensus statement from the fourth international consultation on sexual medicine 2015. J Sex Med 13:144–152.