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Keywords:

  • Multiple Sclerosis;
  • Sexual Dysfunction;
  • Chronic Illness;
  • Female;
  • Pain;
  • Depression

Abstract

Aim

The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of multiple sclerosis (MS) on female sexuality.

Methods

Present study included 142 females (70 MS patients, 72 healthy controls). MS patients were evaluated by Expanded Disability Status Scale (EDSS) for functional status, by Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) for severity of depression, by Visual Analog Scale (VAS) for severity of pain, and by Female Sexual Function Inventory (FSFI) for sexual function.

Main Outcome Measures

FSFI, BDI, EDSS, and VAS were the main outcome measures.

Results

The number of weekly sexual intercourse, total FSFI, and FSFI subscale scores were lower in MS women compared with controls. FSFI total and FSFI subscale scores were statistically significantly lower in MS women with BDI score ≥17 compared with those with BDI score <17. A negative correlation was found between total FSFI score and BDI, EDSS, VAS, age, and duration of complaint, but a positive correlation was found with education level in MS women.

Conclusions

Sexual functions are negatively affected in MS women. Sexual functions in MS women seem to be associated with enhanced disability, pain, duration of the disease, and degree of concomitant depression. Therefore, women with MS should also be evaluated in terms of sexual function during routine follow-ups. Gumus H, Akpinar Z, and Yilmaz H. Effects of multiple sclerosis on female sexuality: A controlled study. J Sex Med 2014;11:481–486.