Sex in Menopause City
Study: Sexual Dysfunction in Women Is Not Automatic as Years Pass
WebMD News Archive
Among the few differences in the groups: Women over 45 reported having fewer
orgasms during non-intercourse sexual activity or during masturbation. Both
groups of women reported a dual dimension necessary for successful lovemaking
that included having both feelings of emotional closeness to their partner and
satisfactory physical experiences.
After comparing all the answers from both older and younger women, as well
as from women who reported sexual problems and those who did not, researchers
concluded that the single most influential factor with regard to sexual
satisfaction via intercourse was the quality of the partnership, in particular
the quality of mutual respect, which then becomes of greater importance as a
After comparing these study results to earlier and ongoing findings, the
researchers concluded that the basis of any sexual problems that did occur at
midlife could not be drawn from menopause status or age alone. Instead, they
write, "Life stressors, contextual factors, past sexuality, and mental
health problems are more significant predictors of midlife women's sexual
interest than menopause status itself."
The study was one of just several research papers presented in the journal
this month on the subject of female sexual dysfunction. All strived to shed
much needed light on a subject that some believe has been hidden in the shadows
For NYU professor of gynecology Steven Goldstein, MD, the findings validate
what he has long suspected to be true.
"It's quite wonderful that this is being studied and that the results
reinforce what I, and I think many doctors have long believed -- that this
whole issue of changes in midlife sexual function is not a simple case of 'take
away the hormones, take away the desire,'" Goldstein tells WebMD.
Moreover, he adds that "As we go forward, understanding all of the
complex, non-hormonal elements that affect a woman's sexuality remains crucial,
particularly when deciding who is a candidate for a hormonal treatment that
might help increase desire and who might benefit more from simple lifestyle
changes," says Goldstein.
Hormones and Your Sexual Thunder
Indeed, many experts contend it is no small coincidence that much of the
attention now focused on female sexual dysfunction is fueled by the pending FDA
approval of a testosterone patch, a hormone treatment that, along with
estrogen, is believed to influence sexual desire in some women.