Sexuality After Cancer: A Model for Male Survivors.

INTRODUCTION - For men with cancer, sexual dysfunction is a common issue and has a negative impact on quality of life, regardless of whether he has a partner. In general, sexuality encompasses much more than intercourse; it involves body image, identity, romantic and sexual attraction, and sexual thoughts and fantasies.

AIM - Acknowledging that cancer affects multiple physical and psychosocial domains in patients, the authors propose that such changes also inform sexual function for the male survivor.

METHODS - An in-depth review of the literature describing alterations to sexual functioning in men with cancer was undertaken. Based on this and the clinical expertise of the authors, a new model was created and is presented.

RESULTS - This biopsychosocial model is intended to expand the understanding of male sexuality beyond a purely biomedical model that addresses dysfunction as distinct from the context of a man's life and sexual identity.

CONCLUSIONS - Most data on sexual dysfunction in men with cancer are derived from those with a history of prostate cancer, although other data suggest that men with other types of malignancies are similarly affected. Unfortunately, male sexuality is often reduced to aspects of erection and performance. Acknowledging that cancer affects multiple physical and psychosocial domains in patients, the authors propose that such changes also inform sexual function for the male survivor. This biopsychosocial model might form the basis for interventions for sexual problems after cancer that includes a man and his partner as a complex whole.

The journal of sexual medicine. 2016 Jan [Epub]

Anne Katz, Don S Dizon

Manitoba Prostate Centre, CancerCare Manitoba, Winnipeg, MB, Canada. Gillette Center for Gynecologic Oncology, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, MA, USA.

PubMed

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