Creating a free account will enable you to subscribe to our daily and weekly email newsletters, as well as customize your reading experience to show only the categories most relevant to you.
Signing up only take a few minutes, so why not give it a try and see what you've been missing out on.
The health risks of obesity are well known, with increased risk of cardiovascular diseases, type 2 diabetes, stroke and certain cancers. But what is not so well known is how it affects women's sex drive and satisfaction, something researchers from the University of Pennsylvania set out to explore.
In a study, published in JAMA Surgery this month, Prof. David B. Sarwer, of the University's Perelman School of Medicine, and colleagues conducted a study with women who underwent bariatric surgery.
They examined sexual functioning and sex hormone levels, as well as quality of life, body image and depressive symptoms.
Obesity is a huge challenge in the US - more than 33% of adults and 17% of young people were obese in 2009-2010, according to the Prevalence of Obesity in the United States 2009-2010 study published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
In numbers, these statistics sound even more scary - 78 million adult Americans and 12.5 million children and young people.
Bariatric - or weight loss - surgery may sound extreme, but a recent report published in the BMJ, showed it to be more effective at reducing body weight than non-surgical measures. This finding is supported in Prof. Sarwer's research, which studied 106 women who underwent this surgery.
Prof. Sarwer's team analyzed data from a cohort study and found that the women lost an average of 32.7% of their initial body weight in the first year and an average 33.5% at the second postoperative year.
And during these years of sustained weight loss, the women reported additional benefits, including improvements in body image and increased sexual satisfaction.
The researchers claim:
"Two years following surgery, women reported significant improvement in overall sexual functioning and specific domains of sexual functioning: arousal, lubrication, desires and satisfaction."
As well as this, participants were seen to have increased levels of reproductive hormones.
The researchers point out that 2 years after surgery, woman also saw improvements in most reproductive hormone levels. They also reported improved body image and depressive symptoms at both postoperative periods.
The study concludes:
"These results suggest that improvements in sexual health may be added to the list of benefits associated with large weight losses seen with bariatric surgery. Future studies should investigate if these changes endure over longer periods of time, and they should investigate changes in sexual functioning in men who undergo bariatric surgery."
So it is perhaps unsurprising that the study shows "that women who underwent surgery experienced significant improvements in health-related quality of life, as well as weight-related quality of life, body image, depressive symptoms and most domains of romantic relationship satisfaction."
The researchers do, however, point out the limitations of their study, including the absence of information about menopause or menstrual status - factors known to influence levels of sex and reproductive hormones.
They call for further research to investigate if the positive changes continue over longer periods of time and to investigate changes in sexual functioning for males following bariatric surgery.
Written by Belinda Weber
Copyright: Medical News Today
Not to be reproduced without the permission of Medical News Today.
Changes in Sexual Functioning and Sex Hormone Levels in Women Following Bariatric Surgery, David B. Sarwer, et al., JAMA Surgery, doi:10.1001/jamasurg.2013.5022, published online 4 November 2013.
Visit our Obesity / Weight Loss / Fitness category page for the latest news on this subject.
Please use one of the following formats to cite this article in your essay, paper or report:
Weber, Belinda. "Improved sex drive after bariatric surgery." Medical News Today. MediLexicon, Intl., 5 Nov. 2013. Web.
6 Dec. 2013. <http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/268296>
Weber, B. (2013, November 5). "Improved sex drive after bariatric surgery." Medical News Today. Retrieved from
Please note: If no author information is provided, the source is cited instead.
If you write about specific medications, operations, or procedures please do not name healthcare professionals by name.
For any corrections of factual information, or to contact the our editorial team, please use our feedback form. Please send any medical news or health news press releases to:
Note: Any medical information published on this website is not intended as a substitute for informed medical advice and you should not take any action before consulting with a health care professional. For more information, please read our terms and conditions.
This page was printed from: http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/268296.php
Visit www.medicalnewstoday.com for medical news and health news headlines posted throughout the day, every day.
© 2004-2013 All rights reserved. MNT (logo) is the registered trade mark of MediLexicon International Limited.