What's known on the subject? and What will the study add? Erectile dysfunction is often associated with endothelial dysfunction. It is also recognized as a marker for underlying vascular disease. This study tests the hypothesis that statin therapy may improve erectile function and also reduce the risk of future cardiovascular events via a reduction in serum cholesterol and by improving endothelial function. The study will also determine whether the treatment improves quality of life related to sexual function. OBJECTIVE • To describe the rationale and design of the Erectile Dysfunction and Statins (EDS) Trial which aims to evaluate the effectiveness of simvastatin on erectile function and health-related quality of life in men aged ≥40 years with erectile dysfunction. PATIENTS AND METHODS • The study is a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial to test the hypotheses that statins improve endothelial function and reduce cholesterol and may improve erectile function in men with untreated erectile dysfunction (ED). • Study subjects are men ≥40 years who are not receiving lipid-lowering or anti-hypertensive medication and have no other cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk factors. • Eligible men with untreated ED are randomized to double-blind treatment with 40 mg simvastatin or placebo once daily for 6 months. • Data are collected at baseline, mid-trial and at the final follow-up visit at 30 weeks. • The main outcome is erectile function measured by the five-item version of the International Index of Erectile Function. Secondary outcomes include sexual-health-related quality of life and endothelial function. RESULTS • Ten general practices have been recruited in the east of England. • We have randomized 173 men for a power of 90% to assess the main outcome. • To date there have been no serious unexpected adverse events. • Study findings will be available in September 2011. CONCLUSION • If simvastatin improves erectile function it would provide an inexpensive treatment for ED suitable for most men, and reduce the risk of future CVD.
- cardiovascular risk
- erectile dysfunction
- health related quality of life