Chinese men are more prone to sexual dysfunction, says a new study by the researchers of Chinese Medical Association.

Men aged over 40 years in China suffer from erectile dysfunction (ED) at higher percentage than their counterparts in the rest of the world, says the study, the findings of which were reported in The China Daily.

In terms of facts and figures, erectile dysfunction affects more than 26 per cent – one in every four -- of Chinese men compared with just 18 per cent of men in the United States. Surprisingly, 40 per cent Chinese men admit that they are suffering from impotence, the study says.

The findings, which were presented during the Fifth China Andrology Forum in Beijing, are based on surveys conducted in 11 major cities, says another report published by the China News Service.

Erectile dysfunction is psychological for most sufferers and that only 7.2 per cent had a purely physical problem, says Wang Xiaofeng, Director of the Urology Surgery Department with Peking University People's Hospital, and the man who piloted the research.

Public awareness about the medical condition called erectile dysfunction is low among men and there is a social stigma related to it. This probably caused 83 per cent of Chinese men suffering erectile dysfunction to refrain from seeking medical advice, Wang said.

Many Chinese men suffering from the syndrome also had at least one risk factor for cardiovascular disease, such as diabetes, hypertension, poor cholesterol levels and smoking. The study says that those who suffer from any of the above ailments should seek medical advice and make lifestyle changes that include getting more exercise and giving up smoking.