Oncology Section EDGE Task Force on Cancer: A Systematic Review of Patient-Reported Measures for Sexual Dysfunction

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Sexual dysfunction is an important and infrequently addressed issue in patients with cancer.


To identify self-report measures for assessing sexual dysfunction and to evaluate their psychometric properties and relevance to patients with cancer.


Multiple electronic databases (CINAHL, MEDLINE, PsycINFO) were reviewed using specific search terms to locate articles that identify self-report measures assessing sexual dysfunction. From the 1118 articles reviewed, 21 measures were selected for analysis. Each measure was independently reviewed and rated by 2 reviewers using the Cancer EDGE Task Force Outcome Measure Rating Form. Any discrepancies between reviewers were discussed, and an overall recommendation for each measure was made using the 4-point Cancer EDGE Task Force Rating Scale.


On the basis of the psychometric properties and relevance to patients with cancers, we highly recommend the following 4 measures: Sexual Function–Vaginal Changes Questionnaire; International Index of Erectile Function; Erection Hardness Score; and Sexual Health Inventory for Men (aka International Index of Erectile Function–5). We recommend one measure, the Sexual Interest and Desire Inventory. We are unable to recommend 8 measures, based on limited psychometric information and/or clinical utility. Finally, we do not recommend an additional 8 measures.


Five of the 21 sexual dysfunction measures demonstrated satisfactory psychometric properties and application to the cancer population and are thereby recommended for clinical use in patients with cancer.

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