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Clinical factors associated with sexual dysfunction among men in methadone maintenance treatment and buprenorphine maintenance treatment: a meta-analysis study

A Yee, H S Loh, H M B Hisham Hashim, C G Ng
International Journal of Impotence Research 2014, 26 (5): 161-6
24990199
Methadone maintenance treatment is proven to be effective treatment for opioid dependence. Of the many adverse events reported, sexual dysfunction is one of the most common side effects. However, there may be other clinical factors that are associated with sexual dysfunction among methadone users. We conducted a meta-analysis to examine the clinical factors associated with sexual dysfunction among male patients on methadone and buprenorphine treatments, of which eligible studies were selected using prior defined criteria. A total of 2619 participants from 16 eligible studies, published from inception till December 2012, were identified from the PubMed, OVID and EMBASE databases. The included studies provided prevalence estimates for sexual dysfunction among methadone users with a meta-analytical pooled prevalence of 52% (95% confidence interval (CI), 0.39-0.65). Only four studies compared sexual dysfunction between the two groups, with a significantly higher combined odds ratio in the methadone group (odds ratio=4.01, 95% CI, 1.52-10.55, P=0.0049). Our study shows that eight clinical factors are associated with sexual dysfunction among men receiving opioid substitution treatment, namely age, hormone assays, duration of treatment, methadone dose, medical status, psychiatric illness, other current substance use and familial status, and methadone versus buprenorphine treatment. Despite the methodological limitations, the findings of this meta-analysis study may offer better insights to clinicians in dealing with both sexual dysfunction and its related problems.

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