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Minerva Urologica e Nefrologica 2008 June;60(2):77-9


language: English

Sexual dysfunctions in multiple sclerosis

Dachille G. 1, Ludovico G. M. 1, Pagliarulo G. 2, Vestita G. 1

1 Unit of Urology Hospital San Giacomo Monopoli, Bari, Italy 2 Department of Robotic Surgery Clinic “La Madonnina”, Bari, Italy


Aim. The aim of this study was to analyze the sexual dysfunction in patients affected by multiple sclerosis.
Methods. From January 2005 to December 2007, 221 consecutive patients, 97 women and 124 men, were included in the study. Age range was 20±65 years (average 38.77). Fifty-two patients, 14 women (26.9%) and 38 men (73%), among those who have had sexual dysfunctions, showed their will to tackle their problem, and were thus taken into consideration by the Department of Andrology. Sexual activity of these patients has been estimated by self-administered questionnaire, through the International Index of Erectile Function (IIEF) for men and Index of Female Sexual Arousal (IFSA) for women. All 64 patients started a domiciliary therapy with sildenafil 50 mg, and in case of failure, sildenafil 100 mg. Results have been estimated for men according to the IIEF questionnaire and to the answers to the third and fourth question, concerning the capacity to have and keep an adequate erection during a sexual intercourse, and for women according to the IFSA questionnaire and to the answers given to questions number 1, 5, 6, and 10.
Results. Among the 124 male patients, 25 (20.1%) had a serious deficiency of the erectile function (score IIEF<10), 11 (8.8%) had a moderate deficiency (score from 11 to 16), and 20 (16.12%) had a light deficiency (score from 17 to 25). Twenty-five patients affected with serious erectile deficiency, also reported a contemporaneous decrease of libido. Among the 97 female patients, 22 (28.86%) of them reported a serious decrease of the genital sensitivity and of the sexual desire; 22 (22.68%) of them reported instead a serious decrease of the vaginal lubrication; 9 (9.2%) reported a moderate decrease of the sensitivity, and 10 (10.30%) reported a moderate decrease of the vaginal lubrication. According to Disability Scale Expanded Score 52 male patients showed a 2.6 mean score (range 1.5-7); 14 female patients showed a 2.9 mean score (range3-6). The answers to IIEF questions number three and four, and to the IFSA questions number 1, 5, 6 and 10 reported the achievement and keeping of an adequate erection after a follow-up of 4 sexual intercourse, and lubrication and sensitivity during a sexual intercourse in all the cases analysed.
Conclusion. Sildenafil has been effective and safe in the treatment of sexual dysfunctions for both sexes. In all analysed patients sexual deficiency was due to the neurological and central nervous system on which depend different dysfunctions correlated with the extension and the gravity of the multiple sclerosis. IIEF questions number 13 and 14 and IFSA questions number 21 and 22 showed a clear improvement of the sexual life quality of these patients, after sildenafil therapy.

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