Magazine article Clinical Psychiatry News

Arthritis Often Negatively Affects Sexuality

Magazine article Clinical Psychiatry News

Arthritis Often Negatively Affects Sexuality

Article excerpt

AMSTERDAM -- Physicians have largely overlooked the sizable adverse impact that rheumatoid arthritis can have on sexuality, Ylva Helland said at the annual European Congress of Rheumatology.

Her survey of 1,041 Oslo-area patients with a median 14-year duration of rheumatoid arthritis (RA) showed that while 31% reported their disease had no impact upon sexual function, an equal percentage indicated RA had a major negative effect in this domain.

Indeed, 21% of respondents said RA had a "considerable" adverse impact on their sexual function, another 7% reported their disease made sexual activity impossible, and 3% characterized sexual activity as nearly impossible, reported Ms. Helland, a research nurse at the University of Oslo.

The rest of the respondents, 38%, indicated that their disease had "little impact" on sexual activity.

Patients who reported that RA had a large impact upon their sex lives tended to have worse health status across the full spectrum of physical and psychological dimensions. …

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