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Menopause. 2004 Jul-Aug;11(4):474-83.

Profile of Female Sexual Function: a patient-based, international, psychometric instrument for the assessment of hypoactive sexual desire in oophorectomized women.

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  • 1Indiana University School of Medicine and Regenstrief Institute Inc., Indianapolis, IN, USA.



The purpose of this study was to develop a self-administered, patient-based questionnaire to assess loss of sexual desire and associated symptoms in postmenopausal women with hypoactive sexual desire disorder (HSDD) experiencing distress.


Preliminary items and domains of sexual function were identified through individual and focus group interviews with postmenopausal women in the United States and Europe. A subset of items was selected for translation and further analysis. Cognitive interviews were conducted with women with HSDD and non-HSDD women in eight countries to ensure items would have the same meaning in seven languages. The resulting instrument was tested in 325 oophorectomized women with HSDD and 255 age-matched nonoophorectomized control women in the United States, Canada, Europe, and Australia.


Psychometric item reduction analyses resulted in 37 items organized into seven domains characterizing female sexual function in postmenopausal women with HSDD. Excellent reliability and validity of the domains of the Profile of Female Sexual Function (PFSF) were observed in all geographic areas tested. Statistically significant differences between oophorectomized women with low libido and control women were found for all domains and all geographic areas.


The PFSF is a new instrument specifically designed for measurement of sexual desire in oophorectomized women with low libido. Robust psychometric properties have been established in a large number of geographic regions and languages, making it useful for assessing therapeutic change in multinational clinical trials.

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