Female sexual function following mid-urethral slings for the treatment of stress urinary incontinence

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Abstract

The aim of our study was to describe the impact of mid-urethral sling procedure for the treatment of stress urinary incontinence (SUI) on female sexual function. We used PubMed (updated March 2015) to conduct a literature electronic search that included peer-reviewed English language articles. We analyzed the studies about the impact of mid-urethral slings on female sexual function. There are different and contradictory results of the effects of mid-urethral sling on female sexual function. However, more papers show that women undergoing mid-urethral sling procedures report that their sexual function is improved or remains unchanged. The main mechanism of this improved sexuality is the complete relief from coital incontinence, reduction in anxiety and avoidance of sex, whereas the most common symptom related to worsened sexual activity is dyspareunia. Women undergoing sling procedures for SUI should be informed that their sexual activity is likely to remain unchanged or even improve after the operation, but that dyspareunia may occur.

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