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J Korean Med Assoc > Volume 60(7); 2017 > Article
Journal of the Korean Medical Association 2017;60(7):555-560.
Published online August 10, 2017.
DOI: https://doi.org/10.5124/jkma.2017.60.7.555   
Sexual problems of patients in long-term care
Sung Chul Kam, Su Jin Kim, Kyung Hyun Moon
1Department of Urology, Gyeongsang National University Changwon Hospital, Gyeongsang National University School of Medicine, Changwon, Korea.
2Seoul St. Mary's Hospital, The Catholic University of Korea College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.
3Ulsan University Hospital, University of Ulsan College of Medicine, Ulsan, Korea. urofirst@hanmail.net
In physically and mentally impaired elderly individuals, sexual dysfunction caused by aging or illness has not received proper therapeutic attention. Moreover, the most important reason for the elderly not to express their sexual desires is the presence of social prejudice and lack of awareness regarding the sexual behavior of the aged. In particular, patients in long-term care facilities may be have less interest in or awareness of these issues than the general population. Sex among the aged is both a biological and sociocultural phenomenon, and sexual problems experienced by the elderly should be approached with this in mind. Patients in long-term care facilities often receive therapy for various diseases that can cause sexual problems. Relatively common underlying diseases affecting sexual function in long-term care patients are dementia, stroke, aging, spinal cord injury, and malignancy, as well as chronic diseases such as diabetes mellitus, hypertension, and chronic renal failure. Inappropriate sexual behavior in patients with dementia poses ethical problems. However, no guidelines exist regarding treatment for improper sexual behavior. Elderly individuals in long-term care facilities often experience difficulties having a satisfactory sex life even if they have a spouse. To facilitate a healthy sex life among elderly individuals in long-term care, both a sufficient understanding of sexuality and sexual behavior and appropriate institutional strategies are needed.
Key Words: Long-term care, Sex, Aged


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