Low Libido in Older Women Isn’t Just From Menopause

Low Libido in Older Women Isn’t Just From Menopause

A qualitative examine by researchers on the College of Pittsburgh Faculty of Drugs discovered that girls in their 60s report varied causes behind why they lack libido.

The examine, printed in Menopause, distilled interviews with dozens of ladies about their lack of need for intercourse into a number of main themes — together with sexual dysfunction in their companions.

“If a lady is having sexual issues, what’s happening along with her companion could also be contributing. Intercourse doesn’t happen in a vacuum,” mentioned lead creator Holly Thomas, M.D., M.S., assistant professor of drugs at Pitt.

As much as 40% of ladies over age 60 have low libido, and about 10% of them report feeling bothered by it.

To grasp what’s inflicting these ladies to have decrease libido than they’d like, Thomas and her group carried out three 12-woman focus teams and interviewed 15 different ladies privately, relying on which setting the participant most popular.

By way of these conversations, 5 main themes emerged:

Probably the most shocking thread right here, Thomas mentioned, was that so many ladies recognized sexual dysfunction in their male companions as a significant contributor to their very own lack of need for intercourse.

“Some ladies discover workarounds, however others get stonewalled by their companion as a result of he feels defensive,” Thomas mentioned. “As ladies we’re inspired to be accommodating, so we be taught to tamp down our personal wants and needs, and prioritize these of others.”

One other revelation was that for some ladies, regardless of having retired from their jobs and efficiently ejected their grownup kids from their homes, they have been nonetheless too careworn to view intercourse as a precedence.

For example, one lady bemoaned the emotional burden of caring for her ailing mom whereas concurrently supporting her daughter by restoration from a substance use dysfunction.

There have been a number of limitations of this examine, most notably the small, racially homogeneous pattern and the dearth of quantitative knowledge.

Nonetheless, since many of the analysis on low libido in older ladies has targeted on hormones, Thomas mentioned, listening to detailed accounts from the ladies themselves produces novel concepts that won’t come out of a giant survey.


Reference: “’I need to really feel like I used to really feel’: a qualitative examine of causes of low libido in postmenopausal ladies” by Holly N. Thomas, MD, MS; Megan Hamm, PhD; Rachel Hess MD, MS; Sonya Borrero, MD, MS and Rebecca C. Thurston, PhD, 18 November 2019, Menopause.
DOI: 10.1097/GME.0000000000001455

Extra authors on the examine are Megan Hamm, Ph.D., Sonya Borrero, M.D., M.S., and Rebecca Thurston, Ph.D., all of Pitt; and Rachel Hess, M.D., M.S., of the College of Utah.

The examine was supported by grants from the Nationwide Institute on Growing older (K23AG052628) and Nationwide Coronary heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (K24HL123565).

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