Men’s Health and Diabetes: What You Should Know

For men and women alike, diabetes can cause or put them at risk for a wide range of unwanted health problems. This includes heart disease, stroke, kidney failure, and vision loss, among other issues. For guys with diabetes, however, the condition can manifest itself in frustrating and embarrassing ways. Specifically, it is not unusual for men with diabetes to experience erectile dysfunction (ED) and other sexual health issues.

ED is an issue millions of men deal with, whether they have diabetes or not. As many as 30 million American men have it. But men with diabetes are three times more likely than others to develop problems getting and keeping an erection. There are many reasons for such a troubling statistic. The increased risk of heart disease is one factor, as ED is often an early warning sign of blood vessel problems associated with heart disease.

Another underlying cause behind many cases of ED is low testosterone. Low T, as it is sometimes called, is twice as common in men with diabetes as it is in other men. While testosterone therapy is a common treatment, it can increase blood pressure and make low blood sugar worse in people with diabetes. Taking testosterone may help you have normal erections or help ED medicine work better. It can also make low blood sugar worse and increase blood pressure, so discuss any Low T treatments with your healthcare team to ensure that it makes sense in the context of your diabetes.

Other Male Health Issues Associated With Diabetes

In addition to increasing the likelihood of ED, nerve damage arising from diabetes can cause male health issues, including:

  • Overactive bladder (needing to urinate often, urinating often at night, leaking urine)
  • Male incontinence (leaking urine)
  • Urinary tract infections (UTIs)
  • Retrograde ejaculation (semen is released into the bladder)

Men experiencing ED, sexual health issues, or other problems should work closely with their physicians to develop an effective course of treatment and minimize nerve or blood vessel damage. Maintain all of the fundamentals of a healthy diabetic lifestyle as well, including a nutritious diet, regular exercise, and vigilant blood glucose monitoring.

Continuous Glucose Monitoring As Part Of Your Healthy Lifestyle

Continuous Glucose Monitoring (CGM) is a tested, approved, and easy-to-use transceiver device that helps men and women with diabetes stay in control of their condition and their lives without the need for inconvenient and burdensome finger-pricking multiple times a day.

If you have recently received a diagnosis of diabetes, ask your doctor about CGM and contact us today to see if you qualify for CGM and access our guide to continuous glucose monitoring.


If you are not insured, or have a high deductible health insurance plan, you can still purchase the Freestyle Libre Reader and Sensors at extremely competitive prices. Prices starting as low as $99 per month

*Fingersticks are required for treatment decisions when you see Check Blood Glucose symbol, when symptoms do not match system readings when you suspect readings may be in accurate, or when you experience symptoms that may be due to high or low blood glucose.

Reference 1: Data on file. Abbott Diabetes Care. 2, FreeStyle Libre 14 day User’s Manual

Indications and Important Safety Information

FreeStyle Libre and FreeStyle Libre 14 day Flash Glucose Monitoring systems are continuous glucose monitoring (CGM) devices indicated for replacing blood glucose testing and detecting trends and tracking patterns aiding in the detection of episodes of hyperglycemia and hypoglycemia, facilitating both acute and long-term therapy adjustments in persons (age 18 and older) with diabetes. The systems are intended for single patient use and require a prescription.

CONTRAINDICATIONS: Remove the sensor before MRI, CT scan, X-ray, or diathermy treatment.

WARNINGS/LIMITATIONS: Do not ignore symptoms that may be due to low or high blood glucose, hypoglycemic unawareness, or dehydration. Check sensor glucose readings with a blood glucose meter when Check Blood Glucose symbol appears, when symptoms do not match system readings, or when readings are suspected to be inaccurate. The system does not have alarms unless the sensor is scanned, and the system contains small parts that may be dangerous if swallowed. The system is not approved for pregnant women, persons on dialysis, or critically-ill population. Sensor placement is not approved for sites other than the back of the arm and standard precautions for transmission of blood borne pathogens should be taken. The built-in blood glucose meter is not for use on dehydrated, hypotensive, in shock, hyperglycemic-hyperosmolar state, with or without ketosis, neonates, critically-ill patients, or for diagnosis or screening of diabetes. When using FreeStyle LibreLink app, access to a blood glucose monitoring system is required as the app does not provide one. Review all product information before use or contact Abbott Toll Free (855-632-8658) or visit for detailed indications for use and safety information.html. . FreeStyle, Libre, and related brand marks are trademarks of Abbott Diabetes Care Inc. in various jurisdictions. Other trademarks are the property of their respective owners. ©2018 Abbott. ADC-09691 vLO 10/18

*The FreeStyle LibreLink app and the FreeStyle Libre 14 day reader have similar but not identical features. Fingersticks are required for treatment decisions when you see Check Blood Glucose symbol, when symptoms do not match system readings, when you suspect readings may be inaccurate, or when you experience symptoms that may be due to high or low blood glucose.

The FreeStyle Libre 2 app and the FreeStyle Libre 2 reader have similar but not identical features. Fingersticks are required for treatment decisions when you see Check Blood Glucose symbol and when your glucose alarms and readings from the system do not match symptoms or expectations

‡‡‡Based on the sensor being replaced once every 14 days, and scanned at least once every 8 hours.

§§§Glucose readings are not available during 1-hour warm-up, when sensor is too hot or too cold, when you see an error or "LO" or "HI" message, or no current glucose reading