Female Sexual Dysfunction


This common condition, which affects many women at some point in their lives, is a persistent lack of sexual desire, arousal, climax or a sensation of pain that can cause personal distress and may greatly strain a woman's intimate relationships. Although female sexual dysfunction can be a lifelong problem for many women, this condition is very treatable.


Female sexual dysfunction can be caused by a wide range of factors, and may stem from physical or emotional issues. It can result from conditions that cause pain (such as arthritis or multiple sclerosis), from a reduction in female hormones during menopause, or from the use of certain medications. These types of issues can interfere with the sexual response and can make intercourse uncomfortable and unpleasant. Female sexual dysfunction can also be related to anxiety, depression, stress, body image issues or relationship problems.


Symptoms of sexual dysfunction vary. Most women may suffer from a combination of symptoms such as decreased (or absent) sexual desire, inability to become aroused (even when a woman wants to become aroused) or inability to stay aroused during sexual activity, inability to achieve orgasm, or discomfort or pain during sexual intercourse.


Treatment for sexual dysfunction can include a variety of techniques, which can be tailored to each patient's needs. Proper diet and nutrition, healthy lifestyle habits, medications and counseling may be effective. If sexual dysfunction is caused by an identifiable physical issue, treatment of the underlying condition can help restore a woman's desire. For women experiencing sexual dysfunction that is related to menopause, hormone replacement therapy may be helpful.