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The effect of sildenafil on quality of life

Christina M. Dording, MD

Depression Clinical and Research Program, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, MA, USA

Rachel A. LaRocca, BA

Depression Clinical and Research Program, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, MA, USA

Katherine A. Hails, BA

Depression Clinical and Research Program, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, MA, USA

Ottavio V. Vitolo, MD

Depression Clinical and Research Program, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, MA, USA

Stephen R. Wisniewski, PhD

Epidemiology Data Center, Graduate School of Public Health, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA, USA

Goundappa K. Balasubramani, PhD

Epidemiology Data Center, Graduate School of Public Health, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA, USA

Madhukar  Trivedi, MD

Department of Psychiatry, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, TX, USA

Maurizio  Fava, MD

Depression Clinical and Research Program, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, MA, USA

David  Mischoulon, MD, PhD

Depression Clinical and Research Program, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, MA, USA

BACKGROUND: Antidepressant-induced sexual dysfunction affects approximately 50% of patients taking antidepressants. Previous research has explored sildenafil’s effectiveness in treating various forms of erectile dysfunction, but there is no research supporting sildenafil’s use for improving the quality of life for patients with sexual dysfunction linked to antidepressant use. The authors of this article aimed to assess the improvements in quality of life in patients taking sildenafil to treat antidepressant-induced sexual dysfunction.

METHODS: One hundred and two out of 2,239 male and female patients in the follow-up phase of the Sequenced Treatment Alternatives to Relieve Depression antidepressant trials who complained of sexual dysfunction were given sildenafil, 50 to 100 mg, as needed. After 12 months, we measured patients’ change in libido, sexual drive, family relationships, overall well-being, satisfaction with treatment, and overall contentment with items on the 17-item Hamilton Depression Rating Scale, Quality of Life Enjoyment and Satisfaction Questionnaire, 30-item Inventory of Depressive Symptoms, and 12-item Short Form Health Survey.

RESULTS: There was a significant association between sildenafil use and improvement in libido and sexual drive by month 6. There was no significant improvement in the quality-of-life scores we examined, but treatment satisfaction and overall contentment increased over time.

CONCLUSIONS: Despite no direct association with sildenafil use and quality-of-life scores, sildenafil may be a beneficial treatment for antidepressant-induced sexual dysfunction. A double-blind, placebo-controlled study of sildenafil in antidepressant-induced sexual dysfunction is needed to further explore its potential benefits.

KEYWORDS: major depressive disorder, sexual dysfunction, antidepressant, libido, sildenafil, quality of life

ANNALS OF CLINICAL PSYCHIATRY 2013;25(1):3-10

CORRESPONDENCE: Christina M. Dording, MD, Depression Clinical and Research Program, Massachusetts General Hospital, 1 Bowdoin Square, 6th Floor, Boston, MA 02114 USA E-MAIL: cdording@partners.org
Annals of Clinical Psychiatry ©2013 Quadrant HealthCom Inc.

 
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