JOURNAL ARTICLE
RESEARCH SUPPORT, N.I.H., EXTRAMURAL
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Evaluating the Link Between Self-Reported Endometriosis and Female Sexual Dysfunction.

BACKGROUND: Studies have found that women with endometriosis have a higher risk of female sexual dysfunction (FSD).

AIM: To evaluate the relationship between self-reported endometriosis and FSD utilizing validated surveys.

METHODS: A cross-sectional analysis was conducted among sexually active women aged 18-90 who presented to 3 Mayo Clinic sites from 2015 to 2021. FSD was determined utilizing a combined endpoint of Female Sexual Function Index score ≤ 26.55 and Female Sexual Distress Scale-Revised score ≥ 11. Associations between history of endometriosis and FSD were evaluated by fitting 3 multivariable logistic models and were stratified by menopause status. In the first model, the association was adjusted for age, BMI, race/ethnicity, marital status, and education. The second model adjusted for the variables in Model 1 and hormone therapy, hormonal contraceptive use, self-reported history of abuse within the last year, and co-morbidities including the history of diabetes, heart disease, hypertension, osteoporosis, and stroke. The third model adjusted for the variables in Model 1, Model 2, and anxiety, depression, relationship satisfaction, and SSRI/SNRI use.

OUTCOMES: The outcomes included self-reported endometriosis and female sexual dysfunction determined utilizing a combined endpoint of Female Sexual Function Index score ≤ 26.55 and Female Sexual Distress Scale-Revised score ≥ 11.

RESULTS: Of 7118 patients (mean age 51.3), 92.2% were white, 78.4% were peri- or postmenopausal, 8.7% reported endometriosis history, and 57.2% met the criteria for FSD. Women with endometriosis were more likely to be overweight or obese, be smokers, have had a history of heart disease and osteoporosis, have had anxiety and depressed mood, have had a hysterectomy and bilateral salpingo-oophorectomy, and have used hormone therapy. Compared to those without endometriosis, women with endometriosis were significantly more likely to have FSD only among premenopausal women (74.2% vs 57.4%). Similarly, in multivariable analysis the relationship was only seen for premenopausal women in all 3 models (Model 1: OR 2.74 (95% CI 1.43-5.27); Model 2: OR 2.55 (95% CI 1.30-5.04); Model 3: OR 2.30 (95% CI 1.13-4.68)).

CLINICAL IMPLICATIONS: These findings highlight the opportunity for healthcare practitioners to evaluate sexual function in premenopausal women with endometriosis. For peri and postmenopausal women with endometriosis, the risk of FSD was lower than for premenopausal women with endometriosis.

STRENGTHS AND LIMITATIONS: This study analyzed the association between endometriosis and FSD in women by menopause status using validated tools that included a measure of distress associated with sexual dysfunction. Limitations include its cross-sectional design which does not allow for determination of the direction of this association.

CONCLUSION: The risk for FSD associated with endometriosis depends on menopause status. Endometriosis increased the odds of FSD only in premenopausal women. Kling JM, Ghaith S, Smith T, et al. Evaluating the Link Between Self-Reported Endometriosis and Female Sexual Dysfunction. J Sex Med 2022;19:1533-1561.

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