UNC logo According to a new study, menopausal women, who have a low sexual desire, usually undergo many more health complications as compared to the women who report a higher level of sexual desire. They are more prone to get depressed, experience back pain, have cognitive problems, etc. This study was conducted by the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Procter & Gamble Pharmaceuticals.

The study investigators state that women with hypoactive sexual desire disorder (HSDD) had a lower health status and worse health-related quality of life as compared to the women without this disorder. HSDD can be defined as a disorder where a person’s constant lack of sexual desire may cause stress or interpersonal difficulties. An estimated 9 to 26 percent of women in the U.S. suffer from this disorder, based on their age and menopausal status.

“Our research shows that HSDD is a significant and clinically relevant problem, and not a normal or inevitable part of the aging process. Women with the disorder experience health burdens similar to individuals with serious chronic conditions,” says Andrea K. Biddle, PhD, associate professor of health policy and management at the UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health. They experience chronic conditions like hypertension, diabetes, asthma and osteoarthritis.

This study was conducted through telephonic interviews with more than 1,000 post-menopausal women. These women were questioned on their levels of sexual desire and feelings of physical and emotional well-being. It was concluded that HSDD suffering women were more prone to experience depression, and dissatisfaction with their present life and sexual partner. It was further stated that women who underwent menopause by removing their ovaries, were more likely to suffer from this disorder, as compared to the women who underwent menopause naturally.

This study was funded by a contract from the Procter & Gamble Pharmaceuticals Inc., Mason, Ohio.

Their study findings were published in the official journal of the International Society of Pharmacoeconomics and Outcomes Research, Value in Health.