Classification, etiology, and key issues in female sexual disorders

Graziottin A. Dennerstein L. Alexander J.L. Giraldi A. Whipple B.
Classification, etiology, and key issues in female sexual disorders
in: Porst H. Buvat J. (Eds), ISSM (International Society of Sexual Medicine) Standard Committee Book, Standard practice in Sexual Medicine, Blackwell, Oxford, UK, 2006, p. 305-314


Women’s sexuality is multifactorial, rooted in biological, psychosexual and context-related factors. The latter include couple dynamics, family and sociocultural issues and developmental factors. Sexuality is also multisystemic. In men and women, a physiologic response requires the integrity of the hormonal, vascular, nervous, muscular, connective and immune systems: a fact too often overlooked in women, until recently.
This chapter summarizes the leading characteristics of women’s sexuality, to give a comprehensive view of the key factors in sexual health. The most updated classification is presented, with a focus on descriptors essential to qualify the disorders with a few questions. Two concise paragraphs on ethical, legal and moral issues and on optimal referral are presented.


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