Get H4rd for a healthy, satisfied life!

written by Dr George Lee Eng Geap on 2 July 2013
Get H4rd for a healthy, satisfied life!
Prof Dr George Lee: "The H4rd Poll is a necessary tool in gauging the perception of the younger generation, both men and women, on issues related to their sexual lifestyle, including assessing their awareness on ED and sub-optimal erection as well as their attitudes toward treatment."
AS one of the most common sexual health problems in Malaysia, affecting 16 to 47% of Malaysian men, erectile dysfunction or ED for short, is increasingly gaining recognition as a serious medical condition that requires urgent attention and care. 
While many of the underlying causes of ED could begin developing with age, age itself does not cause ED. 
The H4rd Poll, a recent survey conducted among Malaysian men and women between the ages of 25 and 44 years old, revealed that ED and sub-optimal erections are becoming common occurrences among younger men in their 20s, with key drivers of the condition linked to a high-stress lifestyle, less-than-ideal physical condition and late night habits. 
This creates an urgent need for initiatives to be put in place to address the rising incidence of ED amongst younger men. 
This is where Get H4rd! comes in. Get H4rd! is a part of Pfizer Malaysia’s latest educational effort on men’s health in creating awareness that erectile dysfunction and sub-optimal erection are health conditions increasingly prevalent amongst men in their 30s due to modern lifestyle choices. 
The campaign aims to urge men to take notice of their sexual health and treat their conditions not just for sexual satisfaction but also as a holistic approach towards enhancing their overall health, as ED is often a marker (or a sign) for other lifestyle co-morbidities, namely diabetes, heart disease and hypertension. 
The name behind the Get H4rd! campaign was created to underline the importance for men to achieve optimal erection – also known as Grade 4 hardness, which is when an erection is completely hard and fully rigid. 
Men need to understand that good health and a hard erection are linked to one another and to have a satisfied sex life, they need to take better care of their overall health. 
This campaign aims to do just that, by first gaining insight from Malaysian men and women on the issue of ED and sub-optimal erection, which will in turn assist healthcare providers and the affected population to understand the issue better, thus allowing for a more tailored approach to the treatment of this condition.
“The H4rd Poll is a necessary tool in gauging the perception of the younger generation, both men and women, on issues related to their sexual lifestyle, including assessing their awareness on ED and sub-optimal erection as well as their attitudes toward treatment,” said consultant urologist Prof Dr George Lee while speaking on the H4rd Poll at the Get H4rd! media launch recently.
Defined as the inability to get or keep an erection firm enough for sexual intercourse, ED can also mean a total inability to achieve an erection, an inconsistent ability to do so, a lack of rigidity or a tendency to sustain only brief erections. 
Despite the high incidence of ED in the younger generation, 47% of the respondents of the survey noted that they have low knowledge of the condition and its effects on their health and sexual life. 
Get H4rd creates the conversation required to cultivate awareness on these conditions and to also highlight the importance of seeking treatment. 
Seeking treatment, however, does not mean going to secondary sources such as the internet or street vendors to avoid medical consultation due to embarrassment. It is important for men to speak with their healthcare providers to obtain appropriate medication. 
The mainstays in ED treatment are the PDE-5 inhibitors and although online sites offering ED treatments are a dime a dozen – unfortunately many of these sites are manned by unscrupulous parties. 
News reports have reported scams by online pharmacies that offered counterfeit drugs or ineffective medicines. Not only are these drugs ineffective, they could actually cause serious harm.
Safety concerns and lack of information regarding the risks, usage and efficacy of ED treatment were an important reason cited by 60% of the male respondents of the poll which steered them away from seeking treatment. 
Also a part of the launch, consultant urologist Dr Peter Ng Eng Pin spoke on the steps men can take to seek treatment for their condition. “Men who suspect that they might be affected by erectile dysfunction and sub-optimal erection should turn to their doctors for help. The first step will be to assess the severity of their condition, and after determining the best treatment plan for them, treatment with PDE-5 inhibitors and a health regimen will put them back on the right track to achieving an optimal erection.”
In Asia unfortunately, discussions on ED and sexual health are often still considered a taboo subject even with healthcare providers , due to the social stigma placed on the condition as well the view of men themselves on the issue. 
This lack of conversation on ED and sub-optimal erection is one that requires attention, if more men are to seek the treatment they require for their condition. 
“In my line of work I have come across many men who find it immensely difficult to open up to their healthcare providers regarding their battle with ED, and instead adopt the mentality that they are not afflicted by any serious conditions that requires them to reach out to their doctors. This is something that we urgently need to address, be it by men themselves or with help from their partners” shared associate professor and consultant urologist Associate Prof Dr Ong Teng Aik.
With the proper education and repositioning of the condition from an aged disease to a lifestyle one, men will be more open to receiving and seeking treatment for their condition, thus giving them better quality of life. 
It is simple: the harder the erection, the healthier the man, so recognise the importance of hardness in your life and work towards leading a healthy and hard life!