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Diabetes Standards of Care & Clinical Practice Resources

Sexual Health

Changes in sexual function are common health problems as people age. Having diabetes can mean early onset and increased severity of these problems. Sexual dysfunction for people with diabetes can be due to autonomic neuropathy, cardiovascular disease, hormone deficiencies, side effects of medications, smoking, alcohol abuse, and psychological concerns such as depression, stress, and anxiety, or a combination of these. Many patients will welcome the opportunity to address these important quality of life issues during diabetes care visits.

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Clinical Practice Recommendations

Recommendations for Sexual Health

  • Ask both men and women about sexual health concerns, review therapeutic options, and provide referrals as needed.

Common sexual problems in men with diabetes include:

  • Erectile dysfunction
  • Retrograde ejaculation

Common sexual problems in women with diabetes include:

  • Decreased vaginal lubrication during stimulation
  • Decreased or no sexual desire
  • Decreased or absent sexual response

Clinician and Educator Resources

Sexual and Urologic Problems of Diabetes Exit Disclaimer: You Are Leaving www.ihs.gov

National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases