The evaluation and treatment of erectile dysfunction (ED) differs from that of many medical conditions. An intimate dialogue between the patient and physician must be established for accurate assessment of ED severity and successful therapy. Patient and partner education on the nuances of oral phosphodiesterase inhibitor therapy is important to maximize treatment success with this currently first-line therapy. Realistic expectations for the erectile response and patience are necessary to resume satisfactory sexual functioning. Relationship issues or partner resistance can contribute to a suboptimal erectile response to therapy, in which case the patient may benefit from sexual therapy referral.