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Erectile Dysfunction in patients with Sickle Cell Anaemia
Background: Sickle cell disorder is characterized by a reduced haemoglobin solubility and consequent polymerization, leading to an increased haemolysis as well as vaso-occlusive complications including priapism. Priapism occurs frequently amongst SCD patients in LUTH, and can be associated with erectile dysfunction (ED).
Patients and Methods: A cross-sectional survey of 120 male patients with SCD was carried out. Patients who had engaged in sexual intercourse were evaluated for presence of priapism, bone pain crises, blood transfusion (over a 3 year period) as well as erectile dysfunction.
Result: Only 43 patients who had engaged in sexual intercourse were assessed. The patients were aged 16-44 years with a mean of 25.42+/-6.34 (Figure 1). 21 (48.8%) had a satisfactory erectile function (EF) while erectile dysfunction occurred in 22 (51.2%) patients. 15 (34.9%) had mild ED, 2 (4.7%) had moderate ED and 5 (11.6%) had severe ED. Erectile dysfunction reduced with increasing age, having occurred in 85.7% (6 of 7) in ages 16-20 years and 0% (none of 2) who were older than 40 years (Table 1). 19 patients had priapism. There was no statically significant associated between priapism and satisfactory EF, (p = 0.27) mild (p = 0.64) or moderate ED (p = 1.0). But a statistically significantly association exists between priapism and severe ED (p 0.01) on the contrary, there was no significantly association between erectile dysfunction and other sickle related complications like blood transfusion and bone pain crisis
Conclusion: Erectile dysfunction reduced with increasing age amongst the patients studied and priapism is the only sickle-related complication associated with erectile dysfunction.
NQJHM Vol. 13 (3-4) 2003: pp. 40-42