Men with erectile dysfunction are at greater risk for heart disease, stroke, or premature death, CNN reported.
Chinese scientists looked at 25 studies in which more than 154,000 people participated.
They found that men with erectile dysfunction were 59 percent more likely to get heart disease than those who had no problems with arousal.
The study showed that impotence also increases the risk of stroke in men by 34% and premature death by 33%.
Scientists have warned that erectile dysfunction may be the first sign of poor blood flow in the body.
Erectile dysfunction is the inability to achieve or maintain an erection that is satisfactory for sex. To some extent, it affects over 100 million people worldwide, and by 2025 it will increase to 300 million.
The results of the study revealed a significant association between erectile dysfunction and heart disease, stroke, and premature death from any cause.
Smokers who are over 55 years old with diabetes are most at risk.
Heart disease and erectile dysfunction are often caused by plaque in the arteries, known as atherosclerosis. Researchers write that due to the fact that the arteries of the penis are already hearts, erectile dysfunction can become a problem until signs of cardiovascular disease appear.
"Erectile dysfunction can develop actually years before men have other signs or symptoms of cardiovascular events," said Dr. Ron Blankstein, a preventive cardiologist at Brigham and Women's Hospital and a member of the American College of Cardiology's Prevention Section and Leadership Council.
Scientists urge both urologists and cardiologists to check the sexual health of a male patient during routine examinations to predict their risk.
In order to combat ED and heart disease, Dr. Blankstein urges smokers to give up smoking.
He also encourages men to eat well, exercise, and lose weight if necessary.