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Arch Sex Behav. 1988 Feb;17(1):87-98.

Sexuality changes in prostate cancer patients receiving antihormonal therapy combining the antiandrogen flutamide with medical (LHRH agonist) or surgical castration.

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  • 1Human Sexuality Program, Laval University Medical School, Qu├ębec, Canada.


The results of a written questionnaire with 44 patients (pilot study) indicated that before the beginning of treatment for advanced prostatic cancer, most subjects had an active sexual life, as illustrated by a normal erotic imagery, an adequate sexual desire and a normal frequency of intercourse. More than three-quarters (80%) of subjects had at least one coitus a week. Slightly more than 50% were able to easily achieve an erection by erotic imagery or by a preferred sexual fantasy; 50% never experienced erectile problems. When compared with their previous sexual functioning, 70% of subjects noticed during the antiandrogenic treatment a major reduction in their interest for sexual intercourse which was maintained in only 18% of patients. It became impossible for 57% to induce an erection by erotic imagery. However, 19% claimed an ability to maintain an erection during sexual activity, as compared to 56% before treatment, but erections usually lacked full rigidity. Twenty-two percent of patients mentioned having nocturnal or morning erections. Despite this dramatic decrease in sexual activity in most patients, complete antiandrogen blockade left sexual activity in approximately 20% of patients. Due to the treatment's excellent tolerance, the findings suggest that such combined androgen blockade could be beneficial for the treatment of sex offenders.

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