Sexual problems in a sample of the Turkish psychiatric population
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Introduction: Sexual functioning has received little attention as an important aspect of patient care for those who have severe mental disorders. Aim: The aim of this study is to compare sexual difficulties seen in Turkish psychiatric patients and healthy control subjects. Methods: Study group consisted of outpatients in remission with schizophrenia (n = 84), bipolar affective disorders (n = 90), heroin addiction (n = 88), and healthy control group (n = 98). A sociodemographical data form and the Golombok Rust Inventory of Sexual Satisfaction were applied to all groups (N = 360). Results: Half ol the patient groups and 72.8% of control subjects reported that they had regular sexual life. The patients with heroin addiction complained about more problems in their sexual life than in the other groups. Controls (86,.2%)) felt more satisfied with their sexual life. Female patients with heroin addiction had statistically significant higher scores in nonsensuality subscale of Golombok Rust Inventory of Sexual Satisfaction. Female patients with schizophrenia and bipolar disorder had statistically significant higher scores in vaginismus subscale than in control group. Between the groups, male patients with bipolar disorder had higher score in most of the items except noncommunication and erectile dysfunction and also had higher total score than in the controls. More men (especially with heroin addiction) thought that their illness and drugs were responsible for their sexual problems, knew the effect of the illness and drugs on their sexual life. and asked questions to their psychiatrists about the problems more than women. Conclusion: patients with bipolar disorders and schizophrenia were unaware of effects of their medication on their sexual life. Finally. it was also found that clinicians in our country do not pay sufficient attention to the sexual problems of psychiatric patients. (C) 2009 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.