Socioeconomic factors and incidence of erectile dysfunction: findings of the longitudinal Massachussetts Male Aging Study
Despite the well-documented relationship of socioeconomic factors (SEF) to various health problems, the relationship of SEF to erectile dysfunction (ED) is not well understood. As such, the goals of this paper are: (1) to determine whether incident ED is more likely to occur among men with low SEF; and (2) to determine whether incident ED varies by SEF after taking into consideration other well-established ED risk factors that are also associated with SEF such as smoking, diabetes, and high blood pressure. We used data from 797 participants in the longitudinal population-based Massachusetts Male Aging Study (baseline 1987–1989, follow-up 1995–1997) who were free of ED at baseline and had complete data on ED and all risk factors. ED was determined by a self-administered questionnaire and its relationship to SEF was assessed using logistic regression. We first analyzed the age-adjusted relationship of education, income, and occupation to incidence of ED. The results show that men with low education (O.R.=1.46, 95%C.I.=1.02–2.08) or men in blue-collar occupations (O.R.=1.68, 95% C.I.=1.16–2.43) are significantly more likely to develop ED. For the multivariate model, due to multicollinearity among education, income, and occupation, we ran three separate models. After taking into consideration all the other risk factors — age, lifestyle and medical conditions — the effect of occupation remained significant. Men who worked in blue-collar occupations were one and a half times more likely to develop ED compared to men in white-collar occupations (O.R.=1.55, 95% C.I.=1.06–2.28).