Dr. Goldstein explains why sexual health is such a frustrating subject to discuss. Dr. Irwin Goldstein has authored more than 325 publications in the field of sexual dysfunction, with 20 consecutive years of funding by the National Institutes of Health in this area. He is Editor-in Chief of The Journal of Sexual Medicine, the official journal of the International Society for Sexual Medicine.
It’s a problem that affects many women. It causes distress on a significant number. It affects relationships, affects well-being, it affects quality of life. So you would think this would be as popular as sliced bread, and the sadness is it’s a multi-dimensional answer and I don’t know which plays more than the other, there is just not a lot of research out there. The doctor has not been skillfully trained in the medical school years in how to manage this. There aren’t any, not one, FDA-approved drug for the management of women with sexual problems; even the traditional sex therapy approaches do not have a lot of evidence that they actually help people. We have evidence that Viagra helps men having erections but we don’t have a lot of evidence that going to see a sex therapist actually helps a woman. We’re just beginning to find out that diet and exercise works; it’s just a brand new field.
So let's say a woman was empowered and wanted to feel validated and she goes to a doctor and says, "Jeez,, I don’t know what to do," and that would be adding to the frustration, and I mean, why bare your soul to somebody about something personal if in fact you’re not going to experience much help. So it is a frustrating issue and one day it will change. I mean, in Alvarado Hospital we have basically the first ever department of sexual medicine; that’s pretty sad. You would think something that affects so many people, men and women, would be in every major teaching hospital in the world, and there just aren’t doctors who specialize in this area.
So it is a little frustrating, but for those people who get the help, it's very exciting. We do have as a group, sexual medicine physicians, albeit rare, and they have good success rates and they can practice their profession.
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