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Sexual medicineTowards an integrated discipline

BMJ 1997; 314 doi: (Published 17 May 1997) Cite this as: BMJ 1997;314:1432

Towards an integrated discipline

  1. Jona Lewin, Senior registrara,
  2. Michael King, Professora
  1. a University Department of Psychiatry, Royal Free Hospital School of Medicine, London NW3 2PF

    Sexual dysfunction is common at any age. The most common problems are loss of sexual drive, anorgasmia, vaginismus in women, and erectile failure and premature ejaculation in men. Up to 38% of women report anxiety and inhibition during sexual activity, 16% complain of lack of pleasure, and 15% have difficulties reaching orgasm.1 Up to 40% of middle aged men report some kind of sexual dysfunction.2 The dysfunction may be purely psychological or physical but is usually a mixture of the two.3

    Sexual dysfunction is a particular problem for physically ill or handicapped people. Half of middle aged men with insulin dependent diabetes report erectile dysfunction.4 Between 50% and 90% of patients with multiple sclerosis will develop sexual difficulties.5 Dyspareunia is twice as prevalent in women with inflammatory bowel …

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