70% of diabetic men in Africa report erectile dysfunction
Millions of diabetes patients around the world suffer from erectile dysfunction, but the numbers in Africa were unknown until now.
Approximately 425 million people suffered from diabetes mellitus (DM) globally in 2017, and this is projected to rise to 629 million by 2045. One common and yet underestimated complication of diabetes mellitus is erectile dysfunction (ED), which is the inability to achieve and maintain an erection sufficient to permit satisfactory sexual intercourse.
Erectile dysfunction has been reported in 49% of the diabetic male population in England, 35.8% in Italy, 77.1% in South Africa, and 67.9% in Ghana.
But other reports from Africa vary greatly, so researchers compared reports to see how prevalent erectile dysfunction is in diabetes mellitus patients, and to determine a possible association with being overweight and with having high blood sugar.
The researchers searched through the libraries of PubMed, Web of Science, Cochrane Library, Scopus, PsycINFO, African Journals Online, and Google Scholar for studies that looked at erectile dysfunction in diabetes mellitus patients. They used various statistical methods to analyse the findings of the 13 studies that had a total of 3,501 participants.
They conducted a sensitivity analysis to make sure that not a single study influenced others, which would skew the overall estimation of the prevalence of erectile dysfunction in the participants.
The study found that erectile dysfunction was prevalent in 71.45% of male diabetes mellitus patients in Africa. They found that diabetic patients who had a body mass index that indicates obesity were 1.26 times more likely to develop erectile dysfunction. They also found that diabetic patients whose blood sugar control was good, as indicated by glycated hemoglobin of 7%, a measure of long term blood sugar control, were 7% less likely to develop erectile dysfunction.
The study has several limitations that should be considered in future research. First, it is difficult to determine if the results from various countries are representative of the entire continent because no data were found for all of Africa. Second, the study only considered English articles, which means the study could be missing important data published in other languages.
These results show that the prevalence of erectile dysfunction in diabetes patients in Africa remains high. The researchers recommend that countries should develop situation-based interventions specific to each country.
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Background. Mortality and morbidity in patients with diabetes mellitus (DM) are attributed to both microvascular and macrovascular complications. However, there is a significant amount of variation in the primary studies on DM regarding the prevalence of erectile dysfunction (ED) in Africa. Therefore, this study was aimed to estimate the pooled prevalence of ED patients with DM and its association with body mass index (BMI) and glycated hemoglobin in Africa. Methods. PubMed, Web of Science, Cochrane Library, Scopus, PsycINFO, African Journals Online, and Google Scholar were searched for studies that looked at ED in DM patients. A funnel plot and Egger’s regression test were used to determine publication bias. The I2 statistic was used to check heterogeneity between the studies. DerSimonian and Laird random-effects model was applied to estimate the pooled effect size. The subgroup and meta-regression analyses were conducted by country, sample size, and year of publication. Sensitivity analysis was deployed to see the effect of a single study on the overall estimation. STATA version 14 statistical software was used for the meta-analysis. Result. A total of 13 studies with 3,501 study participants were included in this study. We estimated that the pooled prevalence of ED in patients with DM in Africa was 71.45% (95% CI: 60.22–82.69). Diabetic patients whose BMI was ≥30 kg/m2 were 1.26 times more likely to develop ED (AOR = 1.26; 95% CI: 0.73–2.16) and whose glycated hemoglobin was <7% were 7% less likely to develop ED (AOR = 0.93; 95% CI: 0.5–5.9), although they were not significantly associated with ED. Conclusions. The prevalence of ED in DM patients in Africa remains high. Therefore, situation-based interventions and country context-specific preventive strategies should be developed to reduce the prevalence of ED among patients with DM.
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