The Pfizer Health Report found 79 per cent of men had a medical problem, yet many said they found it “very difficult” discussing certain, potentially life-threatening, conditions with their doctor.
Dr Rosie King form the Sydney Centre for Sexual and Relationship Therapy said men’s reluctance to talk to their GP about erectile dysfunction could lead to other health risks being missed.
“It’s important to recognise that erectile dysfunction can be a sign of an underlying medical condition and men shouldn’t hesitate to talk to their doctor about it.
“Doctors are trained to deal with sexual difficulties and safe, effective treatments are available,” she said.
Just 44 per cent of men said they would “definitely” consult their doctor if they were having problems with sexual performance, while 63 per cent of those who said they would not seek help citing embarrassment as the main reason they would not.
Although the survey found men were shy when it came to talking to their GP about sexual function, 85 per cent said they would be prepared to take medicine if they have problems with their erection.
“These statistics maybe part thanks to prescribed medicines becoming more socially acceptable, but this apparent widespread acceptance comes with strings attached,” Dr King added.
With erectile dysfunction topping the list of taboo issues for Aussie blokes, they also found talking about depression, prostate problems and concerns about their alcohol consumption difficult.Of the 1256 men surveyed, 36 per cent admitted having weight problems, a third were struggling with stress, while almost one-in-four reported having hypertension or high cholesterol.
Nick O’Donoghue @ www.pharmacynews.com.au