What Could be Better than Viagra?

What Could be Better than Viagra?

Ask Matt Forsyth. MD, what piece of gear on a bicycle can improve your health, and he will tell you a new bike seat. Dr. Forsyth. an avid cyclist, practices in Kaiser Permanente's urology department. He consults patients about sexual dysfunction every day.

"Some dysfunction could be linked to cycling," says Dr. Forsyth. Although not every cyclist will develop erectile dysfunction, current conservative studies estimate that 1 in 2 bicycle riders will develop sexual dysfunction. A study of more than 1.100 cyclists in Germany by Udo Englemann, MD, found a genital numbness frequency rate of 58 percent to 70 percent. Researchers compared this to 155 long-distance swimmers, who did not mention any genital numbness.

Traditional bike seat design drastically reduces blood flow to sexual organs. A potential solution is an ergonomic bike seat. "The new cut-out seat is designed to not compress the arteries and nerves of the sex organs," explains Dr. Forsyth.

In 1990, Irwin Goldstein. MD, published the first report of the possible link between bicycles and erection
problems in The journal of Urology. Dr. Goldstein feels that faulty seat design causes chronic compression of arteries. veins and nerves, leading to damage of the arteries feeding the sex organs in both men and women. Fewer studies have been done to create a strong statistical correlation between sexual dysfunction in women cyclists. But the male and female sesual network of arteries. veins and nerves is similar. "Decreased blood flow causes less engorgement and lubrication of the vagina and vulva during sexual arousal in women.' says Dr. Forsyth.

Your seat might not be entirely to blame. Dr. Forsyth believes positioning on the bike and riding style play a major role in pudendal nerve and vascular compression syndromes. "Not all bodies are built the same. All of our legs and upper bodies are different lengths."

Have you ever tried riding the bike of someone just a few inches taller than you? With just that slight difference in bike size, you can really feel the increased pressure on your crotch. If your bike is too long and you have to stretch far to reach the handlebars, you'll increase pressure on the groin. If you still
experience numbness or discomfort genitally after buying a new seat, "you should probably get fitted by an experienced cyclist at a bike shop." advises Dr Forsyth.

Bicycles have another design feature that could pose a risk to sexual organs. The tube between the seat and handle-bar posts (crossbar) cart cause trauma in an accident. Many people may recall in their childhood striking a curb or stationary object that forced them to fall forward on this bar. This is another reason to make sure your bike fits properly prior to purchasing it. A good bike shop will ask you what your intended use is prior to sizing a bike for you. If you plan on just riding smooth roads, your bike frame can be a little taller than if you plan on riding on rugged terrain that may result in falling forward, or having to set your foot down fast.

There are many other causes of sexual dysfunction. including: high blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease depression, obesity, alcohol, and drug abuse, smoking and sex hormone problems. Exercise, including cycling, has been found to increase blood flow. 'Cycling is still a great form of exercise, and people who regularly exercise are less likely to have the health problems associated with sexual dysfunction. It is important for us to notice signs our body may be giving us and do whatever we can to correct the problem," says Dr. Forsyth.