Local Estrogen Treatment Improves Sexual Satisfaction in Postmenopausal Women and their Partners

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After treating vaginal atrophy with local estrogens, sexual satisfaction for postmenopausal women and their male partners improves, according to the results of a survey published online in the journal Menopause.

After treating vaginal atrophy with local estrogens, sexual satisfaction for postmenopausal women and their male partners improves, according to the results of a survey published online in the journal Menopause.1

The Clarifying Vaginal Atrophy's Impact on Sex and Relationships (CLOSER) online survey polled a weighted sample of 1,000 married or cohabitating postmenopausal women between the ages of 55 to 65 who experienced vaginal discomfort, along with their male partners. In the survey population, vaginal discomfort caused 58% of the women to avoid intimacy and 64% experienced loss of libido and pain during sex. Nearly one-third of couples stopped having sex altogether, citing vaginal discomfort as the cause.

Among women who used local estrogen therapy, 56% reported less painful intercourse, 41% reported more satisfying sex and 29% reported an improved sex life. Among male partners, 57% reported that their partner’s use of local estrogen therapy made them look forward to having sex again.

Laura Corio, MD, a gynecologist in New York City, commented on the study in Medscape, saying, “There are a lot of local vaginal estrogens that we can use that will thicken the lining of the vagina and help with sex.  One thing that's important to remember is, if you can feel better and continue to have sex, it'll only get better with sex. Use it or lose it."2
 

References:

1. Simon, James A., et al. Clarifying Vaginal Atrophy's Impact on Sex and Relationships (CLOSER) survey: emotional and physical impact of vaginal discomfort on North American postmenopausal women and their partners.Menopause. Published online June 3, 2013.
2. Waknine, Y. (2013, June 10). Sex Improves With Vaginal Atrophy Treatment, Survey Finds. Medscape. Retrieved 6/17/2013 from http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/805573.

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