Sexual dysfunction: prevalence and associated factors in patients with mental illness receiving psychotropic medication in Nigeria
Objectives: The objectives were to determine the prevalence of total and specific sexual dysfunction among psychiatric out-patients taking psychotropic medication, assess its relationship with some demographic and clinical variables, determine the effect of sexual dysfunction on subject’s self- esteem and compliance with medication.
Methods: This descriptive, cross-sectional study was conducted in the psychiatric out-patient clinic of a Tertiary Care Teaching Hospital in Benin City. The International Index of Erectile Functioning (IIEF), Rosenberg’s self esteem scale and a socio-demographic and clinical data questionnaire were administered to 300 participants; 150 (50%) psychiatric male patients and 150 (50%) controls.
Results: The prevalence of total sexual dysfunction was 48.7%, while that of the specific SDs ranged from 20.0% to 39.3%, with erectile dysfunction having the highest proportion. Age, marital status, class, dose of psychotropic medication, poly-pharmacy and duration of treatment were significantly associated with SD. Majority of patient with SD reported poor compliance with medication. Self-esteem scores had significant inverse relationship with total SD scores.
Conclusion: Sexual dysfunction is prevalent amongst psychiatric patients taking psychiatric medication and has negative implications for self-esteem and medication compliance. Routine enquiry about sexual symptoms by physicians and prompt treatment of SD might enhance overall treatment success.
Keywords: Sexual dysfunction, psychiatric patients, psychotropic medication, Nigeria.
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