cannabis erectile dysfunction

Does marijuana cause erectile dysfunction?

Erectile dysfunction refers to an inability to have and maintain an erection firm enough for sex.

A variety of medical and mental health conditions can trigger erectile dysfunction (ED), as can certain lifestyle choices, including the use of some recreational drugs.

The medical community has not found conclusive evidence that using cannabis, or marijuana, leads to ED.

However, specific effects of the drug may result in ED, and a person who smokes a mixture of marijuana and tobacco may have an increased risk.

Share on Pinterest People use cannabis for recreational and medicinal purposes.

According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), in the United States, more than 11 million people between the ages of 18 and 25 used marijuana in 2014.

People in the U.S. are more likely to use marijuana than any other recreational drug.

Marijuana consists of the dried leaves, flowers, seeds, and stems from the hemp plant, Cannabis sativa.

The plant contains a variety of chemicals, including a group called cannabinoids. The best-known of these chemicals is delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).

THC has a psychoactive effect, which means that it affects a person’s thinking.

The chemical may also have other effects, and some prescription drugs with approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration contain synthetic forms of THC.

Marinol and Syndros, for example, are treatments for some types of anorexia. Cesaret, which was developed to treat nausea and vomiting that results from chemotherapy, contains nabilone, which has a similar structure to THC.

A person using marijuana recreationally may smoke it in a pipe, a water pipe, or a hand-rolled cigarette called a joint.

If a person does not want to inhale the smoke, they may use a vaporizer, though these devices are also linked to some health hazards. Others incorporate marijuana into foods, such as brownies or cookies, or brew it as a tea.

Many companies also market marijuana products that can be applied to the skin.

While some small studies have suggested that recreational marijuana use may lead to ED, authors of a 2018 meta-analysis concluded that there is not enough evidence to confirm a link.

However, it is possible to identify how certain effects of THC could cause the dysfunction. A person who mixes marijuana with tobacco may have a higher risk.

Smoking tobacco restricts blood flow to the veins and arteries, and a person who smokes cigarettes has an increased risk of developing ED. Smoking marijuana, especially when mixed tobacco, may confer a similar risk.

Cannabinoid receptors are present in the smooth muscle tissue of the penis. For this reason, it is theoretically possible for THC to impair penile function, and this may lead to ED. However, evidence is lacking.

According to NIDA, marijuana can cause a feeling of euphoria, then drowsiness and a slower reaction time.

These effects could lead to a decreased desire for sex.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) note that marijuana may also affect the circulatory system and lead to increases in blood pressure and heart rate. A person who smokes marijuana is more likely to experience these effects, and both put a person at risk for ED.

There is also some evidence that frequent cannabis use may cause men to have difficulty reaching an orgasm or reaching one in the desired timeframe.

However, at least one study found no significant difference in risk for ED between a group that used cannabis and a control group.

When a person smokes marijuana, THC passes from the lungs into the bloodstream. The bloodstream carries it to the brain and other organs throughout the body.

THC affects the brain’s pleasure and reward system. It signals the body to release more dopamine than usual, and the dopamine affects mood and sensation. This is why a person feels “high” after using the drug.

Other short-term effects of using marijuana may include:

  • changed sensory perception
  • euphoria followed by drowsiness and relaxation
  • changes in balance and coordination
  • increased heart rate
  • problems with learning and memory
  • anxiety

Possible long-term effects include:

  • mental health problems
  • frequent respiratory infections and a persistent cough
  • memory impairment

Recently, the medical use of marijuana and its components has received a lot of attention.

In June 2018, the FDA approved the use of cannabidiol (CBD) to treat epilepsy that occurs with two rare and severe conditions, Lennox-Gastaut syndrome and Dravet syndrome.

Some compounds within marijuana show promise as treatments for various other conditions. However, much research is still needed before these treatments can be approved.

Even in states where the drug is still banned, many people in the U.S. use marijuana or its derivatives in the hope that it will benefit their health. The risks of doing so are mostly unclear.

Like other drugs, marijuana may interfere with some medicines and alternative treatments, including:

  • Blood thinners: Marijuana may increase the blood-thinning effects of warfarin and some herbs and supplements.
  • Alcohol: Marijuana may amplify the psychotropic and depressant effects.
  • Theophylline: Marijuana may reduce the effects of this treatment on asthma and other respiratory illnesses.Benzodiazepines and barbiturates: Marijuana may increase the depressant effects on the central nervous system.
  • Psychiatric medications: Marijuana may change the effects.
  • Antiretroviral therapy: Marijuana may make some of these drugs less effective.

Other drug interactions may occur, and further research is necessary.

Anyone concerned about the impact of recreational or medicinal use of cannabis or its derivatives should speak with a healthcare professional.

A doctor can provide more detailed information about possible side effects and interactions with medication.

Marijuana is a commonly used recreational narcotic, the legality of which is being debated in the United States right now. What are the effects of marijuana on the body and how might marijuana and erectile dysfunction be connected? Can marijuana interfere with medication? Read on to find out.


Updated on April 13, 2020. Medical content reviewed by Dr. Joseph Rosado, MD, M.B.A, Chief Medical Officer

Impotence is a common yet life-altering problem that millions of men suffer from each year. However, it is highly treatable and does not have to be a permanent condition. Doctors now use a variety of methods to treat the many underlying factors that cause impotence today. While more research is needed to explore the relationship between medical marijuana for impotence, some men report having increased sexual stamina from using weed.

For many men, the inability to perform sexually takes a negative toll on many aspects of their lives. They may feel like less of a man and not up to par with their peers, and they also may shun romantic relationships. However, with proper diagnosis, impotence can be easily remedied in many cases.

Discover what impotence is and in what manner doctors can treat it today, including through medical marijuana for impotence.

How and Why Marijuana Can Be an Effective Treatment for Impotence

There’s an association between smoking tobacco and erectile dysfunction since it restricts blood flow to your arteries and veins. Individuals who smoke tobacco have more chances of developing impotence, so many assume this could be the case with smoking cannabis, as well. However, cannabis doctors disagree. According to them, the traditional literature around it isn’t up-to-date, and more research is needed.

For couples with concerns in the bedroom, there’s new research suggesting there’s a positive link between medical marijuana and impotence — it could be the only remedy you need to help with ED. By introducing tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) — a compound found in marijuana — to the body’s endocannabinoid system (ECS), men may be able to resolve any sexual dysfunctions, according to studies.

More and more medical marijuana doctors are starting to notice the therapeutic benefits a light buzz can provide. In many states, patients can legally acquire medical weed for chronic conditions, anxiety, pain management and now, sexual dysfunctions like impotence.

But, researchers argue, like with alcohol, the dose is an essential factor to consider when looking into this drug’s effects. Like alcohol, consuming cannabis in small amounts seems to pose very minimal adverse impacts on sexual performance. When using low doses of the herb, many people report a boost in their overall performance because it lowers inhibitions and stimulates desire. In contrast, when you consume more substantial amounts of marijuana, sexual problems like impotence and difficulty reaching orgasm can often occur.

What Side Effects and Symptoms of Impotence Can Medical Marijuana Treat?

Some standard treatments — like vacuum erection devices and Viagra — are first-line treatments for ED or impotence. There are also penile implants and injections. But, some of these therapies — particularly those involving surgical intervention — can remove anatomical structures men require for erection, impair blood supply and damage nerves. Viagra and similar drugs also come with side effects, whereas using medical marijuana for impotence doesn’t have any side effects when done correctly.

Similar to other ailments, psychology often plays a significant role in impotence. Men who have impotence usually get performance anxiety, making it difficult for them to achieve an erection. This is where cannabis for impotence comes in. When an underlying medical ailment isn’t associated with their impotence, medical pot can help some men overcome their performance anxiety and relax, helping them to achieve an erection. It also elevates mood.

Best Strains of Marijuana to Use for Impotence Symptoms and Treatment Side Effects

Different cannabis strains can have a different effect on your body. For instance, the indica strain is more of a “relaxing” strain. Sativa, on the other hand, is a more “stimulating” strain. So, when choosing your cannabis variety, consider these facts and remember — one man’s experience while under the influence of the herb isn’t every man’s experience.

To get you started, here are a few strains you might consider trying:

  • Sativa: Voodoo, Green Crack
  • Indica: Granddaddy Purple, Hindu Skunk
  • Sativa-Dominant: Flo
  • Indica-Dominant: Arjan’s Strawberry Haze, Blueberry
  • Hybrid: Atomic Northern Lights, Sour Dream

Best Methods of Marijuana Treatment to Use to Treat Side Effects and Symptoms of Impotence

Experienced weed users typically already know their preferred administration method. They’ve been through their experimenting phase and have found what works best for them. So, if you’re just getting started, you’ll need to do some experimenting of your own.

  • Smoking
  • Vaporizing
  • Edibles
  • Tinctures
  • Topical

While smoking, vaporizing and taking tinctures have the most immediate results, edibles and topicals often create longer-lasting effects. To get the most out of your medical cannabis for impotence experience, you need to know what you’re looking for from the herb and consider its different effects.

Becoming a Medical Marijuana Patient for Impotence

The most important part of deciding to use medical marijuana for ED is finding a qualified medical cannabis doctor and locating a dispensary. By working closely with a professional cannabis doctor, you can build up a cannabis and impotence treatment plan specifically tailored to your particular needs. The staff at the dispensary can also guide you through the process of choosing the right products.

If you’re considering marijuana for impotence, your best bet is to find a solution that will provide you with everything you need all under one roof — and that solution is Continue browsing our site to begin your search for a qualified doctor, who will help you get your marijuana and impotence treatment plan underway.

What Is Impotence?

Impotence, also referred to as erectile dysfunction (ED), is defined as the inability to achieve or maintain an erection. A wide array of mental and physical factors can cause this issue, some of which are beyond the sufferer’s control.

The many causes of impotence include:

  • Heart disease
  • Clogged arteries — atherosclerosis
  • High cholesterol
  • High blood pressure
  • Type II diabetes — and other endocrine disorders
  • Obesity
  • Injury or trauma to nerves controlling erection
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Nerve disorders
  • Stroke or other neurological conditions
  • Excessive tobacco use
  • Excessive alcohol consumption
  • Peyronie’s disease — bent penis or acquired penile curvature
  • Use of certain prescription medications
  • Sleep disorders
  • Kidney failure
  • Liver disease
  • Priapism — having erections lasting more than four hours
  • Hormone imbalance
  • Low testosterone
  • Prior pelvic area surgery, including prostate cancer, bladder, colon or rectal surgeries
  • Spine surgery

Certain drugs, like diuretics, statins, beta blockers and some anti-depressants can cause erection issues, too. On the other hand, some high blood pressure medications can improve erectile dysfunction. Alcohol, amphetamines and cocaine can also inhibit a man’s erection.

Advanced Urological Care, P.C. reveals that more than 90 percent of erectile dysfunction cases stem from a physical origin.

Beyond the physical culprits of impotence, performance anxiety in itself — or the notion of a “failure to perform” — can lead to a limp or no erection. Emotional and mental factors, including anxiety, stress and depression, can also lead to impotence. While aging is a risk factor for impotence — an estimated 65 percent of men aged older than 65 experience it — it’s not considered a sure-fire cause of erectile dysfunction. Some men never struggle with impotence even in their 70s, 80s and 90s.

What Are the Symptoms of Impotence?

Impotence manifests itself through some symptoms that are difficult to ignore. The primary symptoms of impotence include difficulties in achieving and maintaining an erection. Others can include reduced sexual desire, premature ejaculation and delayed ejaculation. If you experience any of these symptoms — especially when combined with any of the prominent underlying causes for impotence — it’s essential to seek immediate treatment from your primary care doctor or urologist.

The symptoms of impotence may be temporary, chronic or lifelong.

What Are the Effects of Impotence?

Men who have impotence often report having a less satisfying daily life. They not only are unable to perform in the bedroom with their romantic partner, but they also feel embarrassed about their problem and sometimes feel like they are all alone and have no one to discuss it with. Eventually, they can develop self-esteem and confidence issues that can impact their relationships, careers and mood.

Men with this issue may exhibit different emotions because of their impotence. Some may act angry and aggressive, while others may become introverted and shy away from people — even individuals with whom they have been friends for years. Their emotions may be even more compacted if they are trying to conceive and have a child with a romantic partner. Their inability to impregnate their partners can make them feel anxious, stressful and ashamed.

For men who are not yet in a romantic relationship, impotence may prevent them from dating and seeking out companionship. They may feel like they are not worthy enough to date anyone or be too ashamed to share their problem with someone else. They may even become reclusive and avoid the social scene altogether.

Fortunately for many men with impotence, diagnosing and treating this condition can be relatively simple. Men who think they have this issue should make an appointment with their primary care doctor or urologist to begin diagnostic testing for this condition.

Impotence Statistics

It’s not easy for many men to talk to their doctors about being impotent, but it is more common than many might think. Statistics reported by Cleveland Clinic reveal close to 52 percent of men ages 40 to 70 experience occasional or chronic impotence. A study published in the Journal of Sexual Medicine showed that as many as one in four men under the age of 40 might be seeking treatment for erectile dysfunction, too.

Because it is such a prevalent issue in men’s health today, doctors have designed several different ways to diagnose and treat it.

Diagnosing Impotence

Because a man’s sexual arousal is a complicated process involving blood vessels, nerves, muscles, hormones, emotions and the brain, diagnosis of erectile dysfunction can also be complicated.

Diagnosing impotence can begin with the patient undergoing a variety of blood and urine tests, which will look for underlying health conditions like high glucose levels, heart disease, cholesterol levels and other factors known to cause impotence. The tests will also determine the patient’s overall testosterone level, which helps indicate if the man suffers from low testosterone — or low T.

Along with blood and urine tests, patients may undergo an ultrasound of their pelvic area. This test will look for damage to the bones, muscles and nerves in the pelvis. If an injury has happened, therapy or surgery could repair it. Likewise, if the ultrasound shows tumors or blockages, the patient may need to undergo surgery to remove them and restore proper functionality in this area.

The last round of tests can include screening for mental and emotional health disorders.

Current Treatments Available for Impotence and Their Side Effects

Physicians often recommended one or more treatments for erectile dysfunction. Here are seven of the most common options.

1. Counseling

Men with depression, anxiety, rage and stress are often at a higher risk of impotence and may need psychological counseling rather than invasive surgery to treat their impotence. After taking antidepressants or anti-anxiety medications, sufferers may regain their sexual capabilities.

2. Oral Medications

Other treatments for impotence involve the use of oral medications. Some of the most popular impotence medications on the market today include Viagra, Cialis, Levitra, Stendra and Staxyn. If the patient is found to be otherwise healthy and without serious cardiac issues, he may benefit by taking these medicines before engaging in sexual intercourse.

3. Injections and Suppositories

Another course of remedy involves the use of alprostadil, which can be injected at the base of the penis or used as a urethral suppository. This medicine helps men achieve an erection before sexual intercourse.

4. Erection Pumps

Vacuum Erection Devices (VED) are a non-invasive treatment method placed over the penis to increase blood flow and engorge the penis mechanically. These non-medicinal impotence treatments can include the use of a pump to encourage the flow of blood to the penis before having sex.

VEDs may be helpful for men who have diabetes, spinal cord injuries, postprostatectomy or arterial insufficiency and are experiencing ED. Some men also prefer to get penile implants that make it easier for them to achieve and maintain an erection.

5. Lifestyle Changes

Doctors also say regular exercise and eating a healthy diet can be useful in treating impotence. Getting enough sleep could be helpful, too. Likewise, avoiding the use of tobacco, alcohol and illicit drugs can also prevent the onset of impotence in men. Participating in relaxation activities, like meditation and yoga, can help some men improve their erections, as well.

6. Natural Remedies

Men who want to avoid prescription medications can try some natural impotence remedies, too. A few popular options include pomegranate juice, ginseng, L-arginine Propionyl-L-carnitine, DHEA and acupuncture.

Remember to always talk to your physician about using natural remedies and taking herbal supplements, as they could interact with any other medications you’re taking.

7. Surgery

Some men may require blood vessel surgery to resolve their impotence.

Recent Developments in the Treatment of Impotence

Pharmaceutical companies are researching and testing new treatments for erectile dysfunction, including Uprima and Topiglan. Uprima is an oral tablet dissolved under the tongue, while Topiglan is cream you apply to the penis.

Medical marijuana can help relieve your Erectile Dysfunction. Theres a positive link between marijuana and impotence, some strains are particularly effective ]]>