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Sexual functioning of women with Fibromyalgia

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Journal: Clinical and Experimental Rheumatology. 2006 Sep-Oct;24(5):555-61.

Authors and affiliation: Prins MA, Woertman L, Kool MB, Geenen R. Department of Clinical and Health Psychology, Utrecht University, Utrecht, The Netherlands. [E-mail: R.Geenan@home.nl]

PMID: 17181925

Objective:To examine sexual functioning at the specific phases of the sexual response cycle among women with Fibromyalgia.

Methods: The Questionnaire for screening Sexual Dysfunctions – Short Form (QSD-SF) was filled out by 63 premenopausal, heterosexual women with Fibromyalgia (age: 21 to 54 years) who were recruited at meetings of regional patient associations.

Results: The women with Fibromyalgia did not differ from healthy women of an age reference group with respect to functioning in the excitement and the orgasm phases, but reported more problems with sexual desire and satisfaction, more pain in their body, and insensitivity (but not pain) in their genitals before, during, or after having sex. Mental distress, but not pain, was a significant predictor of virtually all aspects of sexual dysfunction.

Conclusion: Our study generates the hypothesis that the psychological but not the physiological aspect of the sexual response cycle is more disturbed than normal in Fibromyalgia. This finding needs confirmation in a more representative population.

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