After getting laid, astronauts risk suffering from erectile dysfunction!

2023-12-02 06:00:00
According to tests carried out on rats, the cosmic rays to which astronauts are exposed could cause erectile dysfunction (note the subtlety of the illustrative image). Anthony Kaczmarek 02/12/2023 07:00 4 min

THE conclusions of this study conducted by American researchers and published in The FASEB Journala journal specializing in experimental biosciences, are, to say the least, confusing…While we already knew some dangerous health effects of space travelbehold male astronauts would now be subject to… erectile dysfunction!

A multitude of health consequences

Let us first return to the risks caused by space travel : because yes, getting laid is not without danger for your health. Staying above the atmosphere, the astronauts suffer, among other things, from muscular atrophy, have less strong bonesdevelop a higher risk of cancer, but can also suffer morally by feeling homesick.

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But that’s not all : prolonged exposure to weightlessness could also be responsible for another ailment, such as this strange respiratory condition from which the astronauts who walked on the moon and revealed last July. This respiratory disorder would take form of allergic rhinitis caused by suspended lunar dust.

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And the list does not end there, sinceafter carrying out tests on ratssAmerican researchers therefore discovered that exposure to cosmic rays could have an impact… on the sexual health of menthrough erectile dysfunction!

A culprit: oxidative stress

In a NASA laboratory, a group of rats was hung from harnesses (the poor…) and another kept on the ground, all in order to simulate microgravity. In total, 43 rodents were involved in the experiment conducted by these researchers from the University of Florida. Some rats were then exposed to different levels of galactic cosmic rays in a simulator.

So, after simulating a trip into space, researchers observed one year after exposure to radiation (even at low doses) what rats’ tissues degraded due to increased oxidative stress (the alteration of cells, a kind of accelerated aging). In the penis of rats exposed to the rays, a narrowing of the blood vessels was observed.

This shrinkage could harm “the functioning of the artery which supplies blood to the penis during erection”, according to the researchers. Furthermore, the microgravity could also have a role in these erectile disorders, but to a lesser extent.

However, let us put these results into perspective, without removing their interest, since we consider thatone year in a rat corresponds to ten years in humans, so our astronaut friends have some margin before suffering from this possible disorder. Moreover, no astronaut testimony on the subject has yet been recordedso let’s stay carefuland thank the rodents for this crucial information…

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