What Is Pycnogenol?

I heard Pycnogenol can help with erectile dysfunction. What is it — and does it actually work?
profile picture of Wayne S. Maxson, MD, medical director, reproductive endocrinologist, and founder, IVF Florida Reproductive Associates
ByWayne S. Maxson, MD, medical director, reproductive endocrinologist, and founder, IVF Florida Reproductive Associates
Fertility Specialist
Updated
Mar 2017
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Pycnogenol is a supplement that’s made from an extract of pine bark. It has several uses, from improving circulation problems and high blood pressure to treating menopausal symptoms. But one of its key roles is how it may help in the bedroom. Some research has shown that Pycnogenol may help treat erectile dysfunction (ED) by increasing levels of nitric oxide in the blood. One study found that among men with erectile dysfunction, nearly 93 percent of those who took a combination of the supplement L-arginine and Pycnogenol were able to maintain a normal erection without any side effects after three months of treatment. If your partner is having trouble between the sheets, have him talk to his doctor about the herb and whether or not it would be effective for his particular issue.

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