Medicines Cause ED: How Can These Drugs Destroy Your Erection Silently

If you are taking prescription medicines for your high blood pressure, high cholesterol, anti-anxiety, antihistamine, ulcer, prostate medications… if you have noticed that your erections not as hard as it used to be… or having a difficulty of achieving and maintaining a solid erection, then this message is just for you.

There are a variety of things that can cause or worsen erectile dysfunction (ED). Some men suffer from ED due to health conditions or chronic diseases. Some are psychological causes. Others are brought about by bad lifestyle choices and poor eating habits.

But did you know that your medicines are the number one cause of ED? Yes, you heard it right! There are certain prescription drugs and even over-the-counter medicine causes ED. Your doctor may have prescribed it to you in order to treat your current health condition.

Related: 7 Bad Habits Causing Erectile Dysfunction That Needs To Be Broken

It is highly advisable to talk to your doctor to see if there are alternative medications that have the same therapeutic benefits, but without the side effects of erection problems.

The difficulty of getting a boner is a common side effect of a number of prescription drugs. While these medications may treat a disease or condition, in doing so they can affect a man’s hormones, nerves or blood circulation. The result may be ED or an increase in the risk of ED.

Related: 11 Things That Are Unknowingly Killing Your Erections and Stealing Your Manhood

If you experience ED and think that it may be a result of the medication you are using, DO NOT stop taking the medication. If the problem persists, contact your doctor and he or she may be able to prescribe a different medication.

If you suspect some of your medicines that you are taking causing your erection not as hard as it used to be, then go over the list of prescription drugs that cause ED.

Common medications that may list ED as a potential side effect include:

High Blood Pressure Drugs Cause ED: Alpha-blockers, ACE Inhibitors Beta-blockers, & Diuretics


1.) Alpha blockers

Also called alpha-adrenergic blocking agents, alpha-adrenergic antagonists, adrenergic blocking agents and alpha-blocking agents. It is a drug of choice to treat conditions like high blood pressure and benign prostatic hyperplasia. Possible side effects may include tremor, sleep disturbance, headaches or nausea, sudden drops of blood pressure, rashes, and can cause problems with erections in men.

Examples of alpha blockers used to treat high blood pressure that can cause ED include:

  • Doxazosin (Cardura, Cardura XL, Doxadura) also for BPH
  • Prazosin (Minipress)
  • Terazosin (Hytrin) also for BPH

Examples of alpha blockers used to treat benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) or prostate enlargement that can cause ED include:

  • Alfuzosin (Uroxatral)
  • Silodosin (Rapaflo)
  • Tamsulosin (Flomax)

2.) Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme (ACE) Inhibitors

ACE inhibitors are high blood pressure drugs that help to narrow and relax blood vessels, making it easier for blood to flow, which lowers blood pressure.

Side effects include difficulty in breathing, rashes or swelling, dizziness or fainting, irregular heartbeats and the possible effect on sexual function – impotence.

The following is a list of the ACE inhibitors that may link to ED:

  • Benazepril (Lotensin)
  • Captopril (Capoten)
  • Enalapril (Vasotec, Epaned)
  • Fosinopril (Monopril)
  • Lisinopril (Prinivil, Zestril)
  • Moexipril (Univasc)
  • Pamipril (Altace)
  • Perindopril (Aceon)
  • Quinapril (Accupril)
  • Ramipril (Altace)
  • Trandolapril (Mavik)

3.) Beta-Blockers 

Generally, beta-blockers are prescribed to lower blood pressure and also lower the risk of heart disease, heart attack,  chest pain, migraine, and stroke.

Side effects of beta-blockers may include blurred vision, cold hands, constipation, depression, dizziness, headache,  insomnia (sleep disturbance), weight gain, low libido or sex drive, erectile dysfunction  or problems of getting or maintaining an erection on command.

Here is the list of most common beta-blockers that cause erectile dysfunction:

  • Acebutolol (Sectral)
  • Atenolol (Tenormin)
  • Betaxolol
  • Bisoprolol (Monocor)
  • Carvedilol (Coreg)
  • Esmolol (Brevibloc)
  • Inderal (propranolol)
  • Metoprolol (Lopressor, Toprol-XL)
  • Nadolol (Corgard)
  • Nebivolol (Bystolic)
  • Normodyne, Trandate (labetalol)
  • Penbutolol (Levatol)
  • Propranolol (Inderal LA, InnoPran XL)

4.) Diuretics

The main action of diuretics is to reduce fluid retention in the body by urination in order to lower down the blood pressure. However, diuretics can sabotage a satisfying sex life by reducing the amount of blood flow to the penis, which is necessary for a solid erection. In a nutshell, the decreased blood flow to the penis can also reduce sex drive or libido and at the same time interfere with erections and difficulties with ejaculation.

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Hypertensive medicine like Thiazides is one of the most common drugs that can interfere normal erection.

Some common diuretics that cause ED:

  • Amiloride
  • Bumetanide
  • Chlorthalidone
  • Chlorothiazide (Diuril)
  • Eplerenone (Inspra)
  • Ethacrynic acid (Edecrin)
  • Furosemide (Lasix)
  • Hydrochlorothiazide (Esidrix, HydroDIURIL, Hydropres, Inderide, Moduretic, Oretic, Lotensin)
  • Indapamide
  • Metolazone (Zaroxolyn)
  • Spironolactone (Aldactone)
  • Torsemide (Demadex)
  • Triamterene (Dyrenium)

Enlarged Prostate Medicines Cause ED

medicines cause ED - ED REverserAntiandrogens

Antiandrogens are used in the treatment of prostate cancer, benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), pattern hair loss (androgenic alopecia), and various sexual disorders such as hypersexuality, paraphilias, and precocious puberty.

Side effects of antiandrogens in may include gynecomastia (man boobs), feminization, infertility, osteoporosis, loss of interest in sex,  and sexual dysfunction such as erection problem – the difficulty of getting a boner.

  • Abarelix (Plenaxis)
  • Bicalutamide (Casodex)
  • Cimetidine (in very high doses)
  • Cyproterone acetate (Cyprostat, Androcur, Cyproterone),
  • Estrogen-containing medications
  • Flutamide (Eulexin)
  • Gonadotropin-releasing hormone agonists
  • Goserelin (Zoladex)
  • Ketoconazole
  • Leuprolide (Lupron, Viadur, or Eligard)
  • Nilutamide (Nilandron)
  • Spironolactone
  • Triptorelin (Trelstar Depot)

Antiarrhythmics Drugs (Heart Medicines) Causing ED

Atrial fibrillation (AFib) is the most common heart problem such as coronary heart disease and hypertension. People with (AFib) may have abnormal episodes of heart beating (arrhythmia). Medicines used to treat arrhythmia can impair normal erections and worsen erectile dysfunction.

 1.) Beta-blockers

Beta blockers are used to help lower down the heart rate. These drugs can also treat high blood pressure, anxiety, migraines, and other issues. Examples of beta blockers that can cause ED include:

  • Acebutolol (Sectral)
  • Atenolol (Tenormin)
  • Betaxolol (Kerlone)
  • Bisoprolol (Zebeta)
  • Carvedilol (Coreg)
  • Labetalol (Trandate)
  • Metoprolol Tartrate (Lopressor)
  • Metoprolol Succinate (Toprol-KL)
  • Nadolol (Corgard)
  • Nebivolol (Bystolic)
  • Penbutolol (Levatol)
  • Pindolol (Visken)
  • Propranolol
  • Sotalol Hydrochloride (Betapace)
  • Timolol

2.) Calcium Channel Blockers

Calcium channel blockers are used to slow down the heart rate by relaxing the smooth muscle lining of the arteries. They are mostly prescribed by your physician to keep the heart from absorbing calcium.

Possible side effects of calcium channel blockers are slower heart rate, constipation, drowsiness, increased appetite, swelling of feet and legs, low blood pressure, bleeding gums, lack of sex drive, sexual dysfunction such as erection problem (ED) and ejaculation dysfunction.

Examples of calcium channel blockers include:

  • Amlodipine (Norvasc)
  • Bepridil (Vascor)
  • Diltiazem Hydrochloride (Cardizem, Cardizem CD, Cardizem SR, Dilacor XR, Diltia XT, Tiazac)
  • Felodipine (Plendil)
  • Nicardipine (Cardene, Cardene SR)
  • Nifedipine (Adalat, Adalat CC, Procardia, Procardia XL)
  • Nisoldipine (Sular)
  • Verapamil Hydrochloride (Calan, Calan SR, Covera-HS, Isoptin, Isoptin SR, Verelan, Verelan PM)
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3.) Digitalis Glycosides

Doctors prescribe this drug to help strengthen heart contractions and control heart rate. It also a drug of choice as a regular part of heart failure treatment.

Common side effects of digitalis glycosides include vomiting, nausea, salivation, constipation, headache, dizziness, depression, visual disturbances of colours, delirium, bradycardia, development of breast or gynecomastia (man boobs).

Examples of digitalis glycosides include:
  • Bufalin
  • Digoxin (Digitek, Digox, Lanoxicaps, Lanoxin)
  • Digitoxin
  • Digitalis
  • Ouabain

 4.) Sodium Channel Blockers

Sodium channel blockers help control heart rhythm by reducing how fast the heart muscle conducts electricity.

Common side effects of sodium channel blockers include tachycardia, dry mouth, urinary retention, blurred vision and constipation, diarrhea, nausea, headache and dizziness

Examples sodium channel blockers include: 

  • Disopyramide
  • Flecainide (Tambocor)
  • Mexiletine
  • Procainamide
  • Propafenone (Rythmol)
  • Quinidine

5.) Potassium channel blockers

Potassium channel blockers are given for patient with a heart problem to control heart rhythm. Common side effects of potassium channel blockers include pulmonary fibrosis,  hypothyroidism, torsades de pointes (a type of ventricular tachycardia), bradycardia and atrioventricular.

Examples of potassium channel blockers include:

  • Amiodarone (Cordarone, Pacerone)
  • Bretylium
  • Dofetilide
  • Dronedarone (Multaq)
  • Ibutilide
  • Sotalol (Betapace)

6.) Anticoagulants (blood thinners)

Anticoagulants are a medicine that thins down the blood and prevents blood clots. It is prescribed for a patient suffering from certain heart problem.  But it can be a very bad thing if you’re trying to get an erection. Blood thinner (Warfarin) has been associated with an increased risk of erectile dysfunction in elderly men.

Drugs Killing Libido: List of Drugs That Can Kill Your Sex Drive

Examples of anticoagulants/blood thinners that can cause poor erections include:

  • Apixaban (Eliquis)
  • Dabigatran (Pradaxa)
  • Edoxaban (Savaysa)
  • Heparin
  • Rivaroxaban (Xarelto)
  • Warfarin (Coumadin)
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Antihistamine can Kill Your Erections!

Can antihistamines cause ED? Antihistamines are used to treat not just allergy symptoms, but also heartburn and motion sickness. Antihistamines that have been associated with erection problem include cimetidine (Tagamet), dimenhydrinate (Dramamine),  and diphenhydramine (Benadryl). Talk to your doctor to prescribe you an alternative.

Prescription and OTC antihistamines  that can cause a temporary form of ED include:

  • Brompheniramine (Dimetane)
  • Carbinoxamine (Palgic)
  • Cetirizine (Zyrtec)
  • Chlorpheniramine
  • Cimetidine (Tagamet)
  • Clemastine (Tavist)
  • Cyproheptadine
  • Desloratadine (Clarinex)
  • Dimenhydrinate (Dramamine)
  • Diphenhydramine (Benadryl)
  • Fexofenadine (Allegra)
  • Hydroxyzine (Atarax, Vistaril)
  • Meclizine (Antivert)
  • Levocabastine (Xyzal)
  • Loratadine (Alavert, Claritin)
  • Promethazine (Phenergan)

Histamine H2-Receptor Antagonists

Both over the counter and prescription drugs to treat acid refluxheartburn, and stomach ulcer can cause erectile dysfunction (ED).

Taking an over the counter H2 (histamine) blockers can cause problems getting and keeping a boner including:

  • Cimetidine (Tagamet)
  • Nizatidine (Axid)
  • Ranitidine (Zantac)

Chemotherapy Drugs

All cancer treatments like surgery, radiation therapy, hormone therapy and chemotherapy can all cause sexual side effects. Common male sexual problems like impotence, breast enlargement (man boobs), loss of libido, and genital pain or testicular pain.

Some of the chemo drugs used to treat cancer that can cause erectile problems include:

  • Busulfan (Myleran)
  • Cabazitaxel (Jevtana)
  • Cyclophosphamide (Cytoxan)
  • Docetaxel (Taxotere)
  • Mitoxantrone (Novantrone)
  • Estramustine (Emcyt)

Muscle Relaxants that Cause ED

  • Cyclobenzaprine (Flexeril)
  • Orphenadrine (Norflex)

Non-Steroidal Anti-inflammatory Drugs (NSAID) Causing Impotence

  •  Naproxen (Anaprox, Naprelan, Naprosyn)
  • Indomethacin (Indocin)

Painkillers – Opiate Analgesics  that Can Kill Erections

  • Codeine
  • Fentanyl (Innovar)
  • Hydromorphone (Dilaudid)
  • Meperidine (Demerol)
  • Methadone
  • Morphine
  • Oxycodone (Oxycontin, Percodan)

Psychiatric Medicines Cause ED

Sexual side effects like ED are common complaints of taking psychiatric medications.

1.) Antidepressant medicines cause ED

  •  Amitriptyline
  • Doxepin

2.) Antipsychotic medicines cause ED

  • Phenothiazines
  • Haloperidol
  • Benzisoxazole

medicines cause ED- ED Reverser

Related: Drugs Killing Libido: List of Drugs That Can Kill Your Sex Drive

Parkinson’s Disease Medications that have Linked to ED

  • Biperiden (Akineton)
  • Benztropine (Cogentin)
  • Trihexyphenidyl (Artane)
  • Procyclidine (Kemadrin)
  • Bromocriptine (Parlodel)
  • Levodopa (Sinemet)

Prostate Cancer Drugs Bad for Erections

  • Flutamide (Eulexin)
  • Leuprolide (Lupron)

Anti-seizure medicines cause ED

  • Clonazepam (Epitril,Klonopin,Rivotril)
  • Diazepam (Diastat, Diazepam,Valium )
  • Phenytoin (Dilantin, Epanutin, Phenytek)
  • Gabapentin (Neurontin)
  • Lacosamide (Vimpat)
  • Lamotrigine (Lamictal)
  • Levetiracetam (Keppra)
  • Levetiracetam XR (Keppra XR)
  • Lorazepam (Ativan)
  • Pregabalin (Lyrica)
  • Perampanel (Fycompa)
  • Phenobarbital 

Recreational drugs cause ED

  • Alcohol
  • Amphetamines
  • Barbiturates
  • Cocaine
  • Marijuana
  • Heroin
  • Nicotine

Related: Does Smoking Marijuana Can Cause ED?

As you can see above on the list (medicines cause ED), there are numerous prescription drugs for serious medical conditions, but also can contribute to the worsening of ED, or that can cause it outright.

It is recommended to consult your doctor and ask for an alternative medicine without giving you symptoms of ED.

Related: Natural & Alternative ED Remedies That Works

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Jeff Parker is the founder of, an information site for today’s modern men on sexual health improvement and other men’s stuff. I believe in empowering men with the knowledge to make them smarter, healthier choices in their lives.

PE Gain