For many years, reports in the literature have implicated bicycle riding as causing increased risk of erectile dysfunction (ED). Perineal compression during cycling has been associated with the development of sexual complications.
To review current literature on the rationale for ED from bicycle riding and outcome of bicycle riding on erectile function and to present available research on preventative measures specifically regarding bicycle riding.
A systematic comprehensive literature review.
There is a significant relationship between cycling-induced perineal compression leading to vascular, endothelial, and neurogenic dysfunction in men and the development of ED. Research on female bicyclists is very limited but indicates the same impairment as in male bicyclists. Preventative measures including use of a properly fitted bicycle, a riding style with a suitable seat position and an appropriate bicycle seat can help prevent impairment of erectile function.
There is a need for further research on safe bicycle and bicycle seat design and investigations that address the underlying mechanisms leading to cycling-related sexual dysfunction in both male and female bicyclists.