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Drugs that may cause erection problems

Many medicines and recreational drugs can affect a man's sexual arousal and sexual performance. What causes erection problems in one man may not affect another man.

Talk to your health care provider if you think that a drug is having a negative effect on your sexual performance. Never stop taking any medicine without first talking to your provider. Some medicines may lead to life-threatening reactions if you do not take care when stopping or changing them.

The following is a list of some medicines and drugs that may cause erectile dysfunction (ED) in men. There may be additional drugs other than those on this list that can cause erection difficulties.

Antidepressants and other psychiatric medicines:

  • Amitriptyline (Elavil)
  • Amoxapine (Asendin)
  • Buspirone (Buspar)
  • Chlordiazepoxide (Librium)
  • Chlorpromazine (Thorazine)
  • Clomipramine (Anafranil)
  • Clorazepate (Tranxene)
  • Desipramine (Norpramin)
  • Diazepam (Valium)
  • Doxepin (Sinequan)
  • Fluoxetine (Prozac)
  • Fluphenazine (Prolixin)
  • Imipramine (Tofranil)
  • Isocarboxazid (Marplan)
  • Lorazepam (Ativan)
  • Meprobamate (Equanil)
  • Mesoridazine (Serentil)
  • Nortriptyline (Pamelor)
  • Oxazepam (Serax)
  • Phenelzine (Nardil)
  • Phenytoin (Dilantin)
  • Sertraline (Zoloft)
  • Thioridazine (Mellaril)
  • Thiothixene (Navane)
  • Tranylcypromine (Parnate)
  • Trifluoperazine (Stelazine)

Antihistamine medicines (certain classes of antihistamines are also used to treat heartburn):

  • Cimetidine (Tagamet)
  • Dimenhydrinate (Dramamine)
  • Diphenhydramine (Benadryl)
  • Hydroxyzine (Vistaril)
  • Meclizine (Antivert)
  • Nizatidine (Axid)
  • Promethazine (Phenergan)
  • Ranitidine (Zantac)

High blood pressure medicines and diuretics (water pills):

  • Atenolol (Tenormin)
  • Bethanidine
  • Bumetanide (Bumex)
  • Captopril (Capoten)
  • Chlorothiazide (Diuril)
  • Chlorthalidone (Hygroton)
  • Clonidine (Catapres)
  • Enalapril (Vasotec)
  • Furosemide (Lasix)
  • Guanabenz (Wytensin)
  • Guanethidine (Ismelin)
  • Guanfacine (Tenex)
  • Haloperidol (Haldol)
  • Hydralazine (Apresoline)
  • Hydrochlorothiazide (Esidrix)
  • Labetalol (Normodyne)
  • Methyldopa (Aldomet)
  • Metoprolol (Lopressor)
  • Nifedipine (Adalat, Procardia)
  • Phenoxybenzamine (Dibenzyline)
  • Phentolamine (Regitine)
  • Prazosin (Minipress)
  • Propranolol (Inderal)
  • Reserpine (Serpasil)
  • Spironolactone (Aldactone)
  • Triamterene (Maxzide)
  • Verapamil (Calan)

Thiazides are the most common cause of erectile dysfunction among the high blood pressure medicines. The next most common cause is beta blockers. Alpha blockers tend to be less likely to cause this problem.

Parkinson disease medicines:

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

Chemotherapy and hormonal medicines:

  • Antiandrogens (Casodex, Flutamide, Nilutamide)
  • Busulfan (Myleran)
  • Cyclophosphamide (Cytoxan)
  • Ketoconazole
  • LHRH agonists (Lupron, Zoladex)
  • LHRH agonists (Firmagon)

Other medicines:

  • Aminocaproic acid (Amicar)
  • Atropine
  • Clofibrate (Atromid-S)
  • Cyclobenzaprine (Flexeril)
  • Cyproterone
  • Digoxin (Lanoxin)
  • Disopyramide (Norpace)
  • Dutasteride (Avodart)
  • Estrogen
  • Finasteride (Propecia, Proscar)
  • Furazolidone (Furoxone)
  • H2 blockers (Tagamet, Zantac, Pepcid)
  • Indomethacin (Indocin)
  • Lipid-lowering agents
  • Licorice
  • Metoclopramide (Reglan)
  • NSAIDs (ibuprofen, etc.)
  • Orphenadrine (Norflex)
  • Prochlorperazine (Compazine)
  • Pseudoephedrine (Sudafed)
  • Sumatriptan (Imitrex)

Opiate analgesics (painkillers):

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

Recreational drugs:

Alternative Names

Impotence caused by medications; Drug-induced erectile dysfunction; Prescription medicines and impotence

References

Berookhim BM, Mulhall JP. Erectile dysfunction. In: Sidawy AN, Perler BA, eds. Rutherford's Vascular Surgery and Endovascular Therapy. 9th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2019:chap 191.

Burnett AL. Evaluation and management of erectile dysfunction. In: Wein AJ, Kavoussi LR, Partin AW, Peters CA, eds. Campbell-Walsh Urology. 11th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2016:chap 27.

Waller DG, Sampson AP. Erectile dysfunction. In: Waller DG, Sampson AP, eds. Medical Pharmacology and Therapeutics. 5th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2018:chap 16.

Review Date 1/31/2019

Updated by: Sovrin M. Shah, MD, Assistant Professor, Department of Urology, The Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, New York, NY. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.