Turkish Journal of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation 2010 , Vol 56 , Num 3

Investigation of Factors Related to Sexual Dysfunction in Patients with Multiple Sclerosis

Şafi Edemci 1 ,Dilek Karakuş 2 ,Halil Uçan 3 ,Fatma Şaşmaz 1 ,Canan Çelik 4
1 Ankara Fizik Tedavi Rehabilitasyon Eğitim ve Araştırma Hastanesi, 2. Fizik Tedavi ve Rehabilitasyon Kliniği, Ankara, Türkiye
2 Ankara Fizik Tedavi ve Rehabilitasyon Eğitim ve Araştırma Hastanesi, Ankara, Türkiye
3 Turkish Ministry of Health, Ankara Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Training and Research Hospital, Ankara, Turkey
4 Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Bursa Şevket Yılmaz Education and Research Hospital, Bursa, Turkey
DOI : 10.4274/tftr.56.130

Objective: Sexual dysfunction (SD) is an important, but generally underestimated symptom in the course of multiple sclerosis (MS). The aim of this study was to investigate the factors related to SD in MS patients. 

Materials and Methods: Twenty-one MS patients with and 21 MS patients without SD were included in this study. Age, SD duration, disease duration, marital status, educational status, bladder and bowel dysfunction, disability, independence, cognitive performances and psychological functioning and sexual function scales have also been assessed. 

Results: SD correlated with age (p=0.029), disease duration (p=0.045), bladder dysfunction (X2=0.011; p=0.012). Positive correlations were found between disease duration and 5-point sexual function scale in SD patient (rs=0.419; p=0.027). However, SD did not correlated with bowel dysfunction (X2=0.469; p=0.418), disability (p=0.190), level of independence (p=0.146) and cognitive performances (p=0.212). The brain stem involvement was higher in patients with SD (X2=0.001; p=0.001). 

Conclusion: The prevalence of SD increases with the patient age and prolonged disease duration. SD is related to bladder dysfunction and brain stem involvement. However, increased disability does not affect SD.

Keywords : Multiple sclerosis, sexual dysfunctio