Navigation Links
Sexual issues a major concern for cancer patients taking new targeted drugs
Date:10/12/2010

New drugs that target specific molecular mechanisms of cancer have improved the treatment of cancer patients in recent years, but those benefits may come with a cost to the patient's sex life, researchers have found.

At the 35th Congress of the European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) in Milan, Italy, French researchers reported on one of the few studies to investigate the impact of cancer therapy on the sexual functioning of patients.

Dr Yohann Loriot and Dr Thomas Bessede from Institut Gustave Roussy in Villejuif, France and colleagues found that patients taking targeted therapies had significantly decreased levels of sexual function and satisfaction.

"The new molecular targeted therapies have been available for 6 or 7 years and researchers and physicians have observed some new side-effects not often reported with chemotherapy such as cutaneous side-effects and gastro-intestinal toxicity. But very few studies have been conducted in the field of sexuality, mainly because patients are not willing to talk with their physicians on this topic," Dr Loriot said.

The researchers surveyed 51 patients (40 men and 11 women) who had been taking molecular targeted therapies for more than three months without progressive disease about changes in their sexual life.

The drugs involved were sunitinib, sorafenib, temsirolimus, everolimus, bevacizumab, tarceva and cetuximab. Men completed the International Index of Erectile Function (IEEF) questionnaire --which includes questions on erectile function, intercourse satisfaction, orgasmic function, sexual desire and overall satisfaction.

Women in the study completed the Female Sexual Function Index (FSFI) questionnaire, which includes questions on desire, arousal, lubrication, orgasm, satisfaction and pain.

The median overall IIEF score for men was 40, just 53% of the maximum score. For women, the median FSFI score was 8.4, just 24% of the maximum.

"The sex lives of the patients in our study had reduced quality and intensity," Dr Loriot said. "We also found that more than half of the patients expressed a wish for a satisfying sexuality, but many of them found it difficult to initiate a discussion on the topic with their doctors."

The impact of treatment on the sexuality of cancer patients is poorly understood, and is generally not considered in clinical trials of treatments, Dr Loriot said.

"Oncologists can address this issue first by assessing this concern more often in clinical trials, and by talking with their patients about it," he said.

He suggested that oncologists could offer patients an assessment for sexual disorders during their treatment course, establish an outpatient clinic to deal with sexual disorders, or, if needed, refer patients to a specialist.

Sexuality is a major concern for cancer patients, as it is for everyone, noted Professor Raphael Catane, Chair of the department of oncology at Sheba Medical Center in Tel Hashomer, Israel. "The disease itself, and frequently its therapy, may have a major detrimental effect on the patient's sex life. It is hoped that the new biological/targeted treatments would be less injurious to the sexual life of cancer patients. "

"The study by this French group has taken an important step toward understanding the effect of biological/targeted treatments on sexuality," Prof Catane said. "They meticulously reviewed the sexual function of their patients receiving biological agents. The results show a diminished sexual drive and pleasure, but the degree and the duration, and how it compares to the standard/conventional therapy, is not yet known. This study can be a basis for further investigation of this very important aspect of cancer therapy."


'/>"/>

Contact: Vanessa Pavinato
media@esmo.org
European Society for Medical Oncology
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Family Research Council: Planned Parenthood Report Oversexualizes Ten-Year-Olds, Undermines Parental Authority
2. New research shows emotional impact of low sexual desire and associated distress
3. Are Latino teens sexual risk takers? Its complicated, researcher says
4. New study reveals prevalence of cyberbullying and its psychological impact on nonheterosexual youth
5. Researcher presents risk-free treatment for low female sexual desire
6. Tumor surgery impairs sexuality
7. Why do sexually experienced girls resume sexual activity after abstinence?
8. Sexual Desire, Satisfaction Dont Diminish During Pregnancy
9. Study points out risks of nonromantic sexual relationships
10. Helping fathers of sexually abused children
11. JustGetTested.com Recommends Confidential Blood Testing During Sexually Transmitted Disease (STD) Awareness Month (April)
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... ... Conventional wisdom preaches the benefits of moderation, whether it’s a matter of ... too high can result in disappointment, perhaps even self-loathing. However, those who set the ... Research from PsychTests.com reveals that behind the tendency to set low expectations ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... , ... Marcy was in a crisis. Her son James, eight, was out of control. Prone ... physically. , “When something upset him, he couldn’t control his emotions,” remembers Marcy. “If ... at my other children and say he was going to kill them. If we ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... Comfort Keepers® of San Diego, CA is ... Road To Recovery® program to drive cancer patients to and from their cancer treatments. ... the highest quality of life and ongoing independence. Getting to and from medical ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... The Haute Beauty ... Barry M. Weintraub as a prominent plastic surgeon and the network’s newest partner. ... and the most handsome men, look naturally attractive. Plastic surgery should be invisible.” ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... Venture Construction Group (VCG) ... held on June 20th at the Woodmont Country Club at 1201 Rockville Pike, Rockville, ... dedicated to helping service members that have been wounded in battle and their families. ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... , June 23, 2016 Research and ... Global Market - Forecast to 2022" report to their ... treatment method for the patients with kidney failure, it replaces ... fluid from the patient,s blood and thus the treatment helps ... and chloride in balance. Increasing number of ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... June 23, 2016 Research and Markets ... Medical Market Analysis 2016 - Forecast to 2022" report ... The report contains up to date financial data derived from ... of major trends with potential impact on the market during ... market segmentation which comprises of sub markets, regional and country ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... and INDIANAPOLIS , June ... receiving a Lilly Diabetes Tomorrow,s Leaders Scholarship is any ... scholarship winners, announced today online at www.diabetesscholars.org ... type 1 diabetes stand in the way of academic ... supported the Foundation,s scholarship program since 2012, and continues ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: