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Sexual function of women with premature ovarian failure

Bueno de Almeida, Deborah Marçal MD; Benetti-Pinto, Cristina Laguna MD, PhD; Makuch, Maria Yolanda MD, PhD

doi: 10.1097/gme.0b013e3181f4318d
Original Articles

Objective: The aim of this study was to evaluate the sexual function of women with premature ovarian failure (POF).

Methods: A cross-sectional study was performed to evaluate 58 women with a diagnosis of POF compared with a control group composed of 58 women of reproductive age with normal ovarian function, paired for age (±2 y). Sexual function was evaluated in the two groups using the Female Sexual Function Index (FSFI).

Results: The mean ± SD age of the women in the POF and control groups was 39.4 ± 6.5 and 39.0 ± 6.8 years, respectively. Mean ± SD FSFI score was 24.0 ± 6.0 and 27.3 ± 4.8 in the POF and control groups, respectively. The prevalence of sexual dysfunction (total FSFI score ≤26.55) in the POF group was 62.1% (n = 36) compared with 37.8% (n = 22) in the control group (P = 0.0093). In the analysis of domains, the only domain in which no statistically significant difference was found between the two groups was desire. For the domains of arousal, lubrication, orgasm, satisfaction, and pain, scores were significantly lower, hence poorer, in the group of women with POF compared with the control group. Belonging to the POF group increased a woman's likelihood of having sexual dysfunction by 2.8-fold (OR = 2.78, IC 1.29 to 5.98, P < 0.05).

Conclusions: Women with POF had a higher prevalence of sexual dysfunction compared with women with normal gonadal function and more difficulties in relation to satisfaction, lubrication, orgasm, pain, and arousal; however, there were no differences between the two groups with respect to desire.

From the Department of Gynecology and Obstetric, School of Medicine, University of Campinas (UNICAMP), Campinas, São Paulo, Brazil.

Received June 10, 2010; revised and accepted July 27, 2010.

Funding/support: This study was partially supported by a grant from Coordenação de Aperfeiçoamento de Pessoal de Nível Superior, Ministry of Education, Brazil.

Financial disclosure/conflicts of interest: The authors alone are responsible for the content and writing of this article.

Address correspondence to: Deborah Marçal Bueno de Almeida, MD, Hospital da Mulher CAISM/UNICAMP, Divisão de Ginecologia, Rua Alexander Fleming, 101, Cidade Universitária, 13083-881 Campinas, São Paulo, Brazil. E-mail:

©2011The North American Menopause Society