The cholesterol-lowering drugs known as statins could also reduce erectile dysfunction (ED), new research suggests.
Statins are frequently used as part of diabetes care to reduce the risk of heart disease, which is a common complication of diabetes.
Additionally, it is thought up to 75 per cent of men with diabetes will suffer from ED at some point in their lives.
Scientists at Elpis Hospital, Athens, Greece tracked 100 men between the ages of 40 and 70 years, all of whom had high levels of cholesterol and a history of impotence.
In a three-month study, half of the participants received statins while the other half were untreated.
The statins group were found to have a 43 per cent improvement in erectile function, on average. The researchers pointed out this effect is around half of that of sildenafil (Viagra).
Lead researcher Alexios Samantzas, said: “Statins work by improving blood vessels and blood flow. We hoped to see some small improvement, but it was much larger than expected.

“By improving cholesterol levels, patients were also benefiting from better erections. It is a win-win. And patients do not have to take specific drugs for erectile dysfunction.”
Samantzas added that statins would be unlikely to improve erectile function in men who already had healthy levels of cholesterol.
Professor Jeremy Pearso, Associate Medical Director at the British Heart Foundatio, said of the findings: “This small study adds to the body of evidence that taking statins could actually be useful in reducing erectile dysfunction.
“This should be reassuring for male patients taking statins, who need not worry that taking their statins might cause erectile dysfunction.”
The results were revealed at the European Society of Cardiology Congress in Rome.

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