Fear and Loathing in the Bedroom
When sexual pain strikes, the impact goes beyond pain during intercourse. Painful sex is associated with significant cognitive, emotional, and physical consequences that affect women even outside the bedroom. This common condition, affecting nearly 45% of older women and 34% of younger women, is linked to local (ie, pelvic) and widespread pain sensitivity, in addition to other areas of bodily pain. Sexual pain is also associated with significant intercourse related distress, including fear and anxiety which may be present before, during, or after vaginal penetration. Unfortunately, this topic remains taboo among patients and providers—patients offen suffer in silence for years before receiving treatment from a provider with knowledge of sexual pain. This presentation will cover the proposed mechanisms of sexual pain and how this type of pain impacts sexual and physical function, partner dynamics, and health related quality of life. Participants will learn the key components of a musculoskeletal pelvic examination for sexual pain, how to screen for sexual pain, and how to engage other providers to provide the multidisciplinary care warranted for managing this condition. (Recorded at PAINWeek 2019)
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