Phases of female sexual response cycle among Malaysian women with Infertility: A factor analysis study

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Abstract

Introduction:

This cross-sectional study aimed to determine the construct of the phases of the female sexual response cycle (SRC) among women attending an infertility clinic in a Malaysian tertiary center.

Methods:

The sexual response phases were measured with a validated Malay version of the Female Sexual Function Index (FSFI). The correlation structure of the items of the SRC phases (i.e. desire, arousal, orgasm, satisfaction and pain) was determined using principal component analysis (PCA), with varimax rotation method. The number of factors obtained was decided using Kaiser's criteria.

Results:

A total of 150 married women with a mean age of 32 years participated in this study. Factor loadings using PCA with varimax rotation divided the sexual domains into three components. The first construct comprised sexual arousal, lubrication and pain (suggesting a mechanical component). The second construct were orgasm and sexual satisfaction (suggesting a physical achievement). Sexual desire, suggesting a psychological component, stood on its own as the third.

Discussion:

The findings suggest that three constructs could be identified and in favor of the Basson model (a non-linear concept of SRC) for Malaysian women's sexual functioning. Understanding this would help clinicians to strategize the treatment approach of sexual dysfunction in women with infertility.

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