Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is one of the leading causes of death, accounting for one-third of all deaths worldwide. Patients with CVD are three times more likely to complain of sexual dysfunction than healthy people. Causes of sexual dysfunction in patients with CVD include physical/mental changes and drug side effects. The prevalence of sexual dysfunction in patients with CVD has been estimated to be up to 89%. Ordinary treatments such as pharmacotherapy cannot effectively reduce sexual problems. Therefore, sexual rehabilitation has a broad spectrum, including exercise therapy such as pelvic floor muscle treatment, appropriate counseling, a multidisciplinary approach, and partner rehabilitation. In this study, systematic review and meta-analysis was performed to investigate the effect of sexual rehabilitation on sexual problems in patients with CVD.
Comprehensive literature searches were conducted using MEDLINE, Cochrane Library electronic database, and EMBASE through June 2022. Questionnaire scores at the end point as outcomes of the study were recorded as were standardized mean difference (SMD) with their 95% confidence intervals (CIs). Meta-regression analysis was conducted for each moderator. We performed a risk of bias evaluation for included studies using the RoB 2 tool.
The overall SMD in the meta-analysis for sexual rehabilitation versus no-sexual rehabilitation was 0.430 (95% CI, 0.226-0.633). There was a statistical difference between groups. SMD changes were 0.674 (95% CI, 0.308-1.039) at one month and 0.320 (95% CI, 0.074-0.565) at six months. The regression analysis with all variables (number of patients, study duration, and questionnaire types) revealed no significance.
This study indicates that sexual rehabilitation is an effective method with high therapeutic potential for sexual dysfunction of patients with CVD. However, for clinical application, well-designed studies with many patients should be conducted in the future and the standardization of rehabilitation protocols is required.
The world journal of men's health. 2023 Jan 01 [Epub ahead of print]
Jae Joon Park, Seung Whan Doo, Allison Kwon, Do Kyung Kim, Won Jae Yang, Yun Seob Song, Sung Ryul Shim, Jae Heon Kim
Department of Urology, Soonchunhyang University Seoul Hospital, Soonchunhyang University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea., Department of Biochemistry, College of Biological Science, University of California, Davis, Davis, CA, USA., Department of Health and Medical Informatics, Kyungnam University College of Health Sciences, Changwon, Korea. ., Department of Urology, Soonchunhyang University Seoul Hospital, Soonchunhyang University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea. .