Content » Vol 44, Issue 11

Original report

Sexual function in a traumatic spinal cord injured population 10–45 years after injury

Ida Biering-Sørensen, Rikke Bølling Hansen, Fin Biering-Sørensen
Clinic for Spinal Cord Injuries, Copenhagen University Hospital, DK-2100 Copenhagen, Denmark
DOI: 10.2340/16501977-1057


Objective: To examine sexual function at least 10 years after traumatic spinal cord injury.
Study design: Cross-sectional questionnaire plus retrospective and prospective data from medical files.
Subjects: A total of 279 individuals with traumatic spinal cord injury.
Results: For spinal cord injured women: 94% had no problems with impaired vaginal lubrication; 22% had given birth after the injury; and 69% reported being satisfied with their sexual life. The women who were satisfied with their sexual life were younger than those who were not, and were younger at the time of injury. For spinal cord injured men: 75% could achieve erection, and they were younger than those who could not achieve erection; 35% used aid(s) for erection; 78–94% had positive reported effect of penile vibration, drugs and intracavernous injection for erection; 44% could achieve ejaculation, and they were younger than those who could not; 56% used aid(s) for ejaculation; 19% had made a woman pregnant, and a higher frequency of these men could achieve erection and ejaculation; 54% reported being satisfied with their sexual life; and significantly more men who had made a woman pregnant were satisfied with their sexual life. For both genders problems regarding bladder and bowel management, pressure ulcers, spasticity or pain correlated with lower satisfaction with sexual life.

Lay Abstract


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