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The Impact of Prostate Cancer on Men’s Sexual Well-Being

The Impact of Prostate Cancer on Men’s Sexual Well-Being

Past research has not provided a comprehensive picture of men’s sexual well-being following treatment for prostate cancer. Therefore, we assessed the impact of prostate cancer and its treatment on a broad range of aspects of men’s relational and sexual well-being including expressions of affection, relationship quality, self-concept, sexual desire, erections, orgasmic consistency and sexual satisfaction. Interviews were conducted with 19 men who were 1 to 5 years post-treatment and ranged in age from 49 to 74 years. Transcripts were analyzed using the framework methodology.

Some but not all aspects of men’s sexual well-being were affected by treatment; there was considerable variability between men in the specific aspects that were affected as well as their emotional impact. Following treatment, most (but not all) of the men reported no change in the amount and type of affection expressed, the quality of their romantic relationship, their self-concept as a man, or their sexual desire.

In contrast, nearly all of the men described negative changes that were distressing to them in erections, orgasmic consistency, and sexual satisfaction. Further, most of the men had stopped engaging in any sexual activity with their partner because of erection difficulties, although one third of them continued to masturbate. Five themes emerged with respect to factors that either contributed to or buffered the emotional impact of changes in sexual well-being.

These results are discussed with respect to the importance of facilitating sexual communication between partners and between patients and health care providers.

Speakers: E. S Byers
Conference: WAS Glasgow 2011
Areas of Interest / Categories: Prostate Cancer, Relationship Issues, Sexual Function, WAS 2011

WAS 2011

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