Sexual Function and Depressive Symptoms Among Female North American Medical Students

Alan W Shindel, Michael L. Eisenberg, Benjamin N. Breyer, Ira D. Sharlip, James F. Smith

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

25 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Introduction. Depression and sexual dysfunction are often comorbid. Aim. We explored the relationship between sexuality, sexual dysfunction, and depressive symptoms in female medical students in North America. Main Outcome Measure. Female North American medical students were invited to participate in an internet survey. The CES-D was utilized to screen for depressive symptoms and an abbreviated Spielberger State-Trait Anxiety Index (STAI) was used to quantify anxiety symptoms. Methods. Subjects completed an ethnodemographic survey, a sexuality survey, and modified instruments for the quantification of sexual function (the Female Sexual Function Index [FSFI] and the Index of Sexual Life [ISL]). Multivariable logistic regression was used to explore the relationship between sexuality and depressive symptoms. Results. There were 1,241 female subjects with complete data on CES-D and STAI. Mean age was 25.4years. Depressive symptoms (CES-D>16) were present in 46% of respondents and were more common in subjects with anxiety symptoms. Subjects who were Caucasian, younger than 28, heterosexual, and in a relationship were least likely to report depressive symptoms. High risk of female sexual dysfunction (HRFSD) was significantly associated with greater likelihood of depressive symptoms (odds ratio [OR] 2.25, P<0.001). After adjusting for ethnodemographic and sexual history factors, HRFSD remained significantly positively associated with depressive symptoms (OR 1.85, P<0.001). Analysis of FSFI and ISL domains indicated that depressive symptoms were most directly associated with worse orgasmic function, interference in sex life from stress and lack of partner, and lower general life satisfaction (P<0.05). Interestingly, greater ISL-sexual satisfaction was associated with greater odds of depressive symptoms (OR 1.40, P=0.01). Conclusion. Depressive symptoms are common in female medical students. HRFSD is associated with depressive symptoms, although the relationship is complex when psychoscial factors are included in the multivariate model. Attention to sexuality factors from student health providers may enhance quality-of-life, academic achievement, and patient care.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)391-399
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Sexual Medicine
Volume8
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 2011

Fingerprint

Medical Students
Depression
Sexuality
Anxiety
Odds Ratio
Orgasm
Heterosexuality
North America
Psychological Stress
Internet
Patient Care
Logistic Models
Quality of Life
Outcome Assessment (Health Care)
Students

Keywords

  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Depressive Symptoms
  • Female Sexual Dysfunction
  • Medical Students
  • Sexuality

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Urology
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology
  • Reproductive Medicine

Cite this

Sexual Function and Depressive Symptoms Among Female North American Medical Students. / Shindel, Alan W; Eisenberg, Michael L.; Breyer, Benjamin N.; Sharlip, Ira D.; Smith, James F.

In: Journal of Sexual Medicine, Vol. 8, No. 2, 02.2011, p. 391-399.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Shindel, Alan W ; Eisenberg, Michael L. ; Breyer, Benjamin N. ; Sharlip, Ira D. ; Smith, James F. / Sexual Function and Depressive Symptoms Among Female North American Medical Students. In: Journal of Sexual Medicine. 2011 ; Vol. 8, No. 2. pp. 391-399.
@article{750b877cd5ee40a6832aaf47cab229f3,
title = "Sexual Function and Depressive Symptoms Among Female North American Medical Students",
abstract = "Introduction. Depression and sexual dysfunction are often comorbid. Aim. We explored the relationship between sexuality, sexual dysfunction, and depressive symptoms in female medical students in North America. Main Outcome Measure. Female North American medical students were invited to participate in an internet survey. The CES-D was utilized to screen for depressive symptoms and an abbreviated Spielberger State-Trait Anxiety Index (STAI) was used to quantify anxiety symptoms. Methods. Subjects completed an ethnodemographic survey, a sexuality survey, and modified instruments for the quantification of sexual function (the Female Sexual Function Index [FSFI] and the Index of Sexual Life [ISL]). Multivariable logistic regression was used to explore the relationship between sexuality and depressive symptoms. Results. There were 1,241 female subjects with complete data on CES-D and STAI. Mean age was 25.4years. Depressive symptoms (CES-D>16) were present in 46{\%} of respondents and were more common in subjects with anxiety symptoms. Subjects who were Caucasian, younger than 28, heterosexual, and in a relationship were least likely to report depressive symptoms. High risk of female sexual dysfunction (HRFSD) was significantly associated with greater likelihood of depressive symptoms (odds ratio [OR] 2.25, P<0.001). After adjusting for ethnodemographic and sexual history factors, HRFSD remained significantly positively associated with depressive symptoms (OR 1.85, P<0.001). Analysis of FSFI and ISL domains indicated that depressive symptoms were most directly associated with worse orgasmic function, interference in sex life from stress and lack of partner, and lower general life satisfaction (P<0.05). Interestingly, greater ISL-sexual satisfaction was associated with greater odds of depressive symptoms (OR 1.40, P=0.01). Conclusion. Depressive symptoms are common in female medical students. HRFSD is associated with depressive symptoms, although the relationship is complex when psychoscial factors are included in the multivariate model. Attention to sexuality factors from student health providers may enhance quality-of-life, academic achievement, and patient care.",
keywords = "Anxiety, Depression, Depressive Symptoms, Female Sexual Dysfunction, Medical Students, Sexuality",
author = "Shindel, {Alan W} and Eisenberg, {Michael L.} and Breyer, {Benjamin N.} and Sharlip, {Ira D.} and Smith, {James F.}",
year = "2011",
month = "2",
doi = "10.1111/j.1743-6109.2010.02085.x",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "8",
pages = "391--399",
journal = "Journal of Sexual Medicine",
issn = "1743-6095",
publisher = "Wiley-Blackwell",
number = "2",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Sexual Function and Depressive Symptoms Among Female North American Medical Students

AU - Shindel, Alan W

AU - Eisenberg, Michael L.

AU - Breyer, Benjamin N.

AU - Sharlip, Ira D.

AU - Smith, James F.

PY - 2011/2

Y1 - 2011/2

N2 - Introduction. Depression and sexual dysfunction are often comorbid. Aim. We explored the relationship between sexuality, sexual dysfunction, and depressive symptoms in female medical students in North America. Main Outcome Measure. Female North American medical students were invited to participate in an internet survey. The CES-D was utilized to screen for depressive symptoms and an abbreviated Spielberger State-Trait Anxiety Index (STAI) was used to quantify anxiety symptoms. Methods. Subjects completed an ethnodemographic survey, a sexuality survey, and modified instruments for the quantification of sexual function (the Female Sexual Function Index [FSFI] and the Index of Sexual Life [ISL]). Multivariable logistic regression was used to explore the relationship between sexuality and depressive symptoms. Results. There were 1,241 female subjects with complete data on CES-D and STAI. Mean age was 25.4years. Depressive symptoms (CES-D>16) were present in 46% of respondents and were more common in subjects with anxiety symptoms. Subjects who were Caucasian, younger than 28, heterosexual, and in a relationship were least likely to report depressive symptoms. High risk of female sexual dysfunction (HRFSD) was significantly associated with greater likelihood of depressive symptoms (odds ratio [OR] 2.25, P<0.001). After adjusting for ethnodemographic and sexual history factors, HRFSD remained significantly positively associated with depressive symptoms (OR 1.85, P<0.001). Analysis of FSFI and ISL domains indicated that depressive symptoms were most directly associated with worse orgasmic function, interference in sex life from stress and lack of partner, and lower general life satisfaction (P<0.05). Interestingly, greater ISL-sexual satisfaction was associated with greater odds of depressive symptoms (OR 1.40, P=0.01). Conclusion. Depressive symptoms are common in female medical students. HRFSD is associated with depressive symptoms, although the relationship is complex when psychoscial factors are included in the multivariate model. Attention to sexuality factors from student health providers may enhance quality-of-life, academic achievement, and patient care.

AB - Introduction. Depression and sexual dysfunction are often comorbid. Aim. We explored the relationship between sexuality, sexual dysfunction, and depressive symptoms in female medical students in North America. Main Outcome Measure. Female North American medical students were invited to participate in an internet survey. The CES-D was utilized to screen for depressive symptoms and an abbreviated Spielberger State-Trait Anxiety Index (STAI) was used to quantify anxiety symptoms. Methods. Subjects completed an ethnodemographic survey, a sexuality survey, and modified instruments for the quantification of sexual function (the Female Sexual Function Index [FSFI] and the Index of Sexual Life [ISL]). Multivariable logistic regression was used to explore the relationship between sexuality and depressive symptoms. Results. There were 1,241 female subjects with complete data on CES-D and STAI. Mean age was 25.4years. Depressive symptoms (CES-D>16) were present in 46% of respondents and were more common in subjects with anxiety symptoms. Subjects who were Caucasian, younger than 28, heterosexual, and in a relationship were least likely to report depressive symptoms. High risk of female sexual dysfunction (HRFSD) was significantly associated with greater likelihood of depressive symptoms (odds ratio [OR] 2.25, P<0.001). After adjusting for ethnodemographic and sexual history factors, HRFSD remained significantly positively associated with depressive symptoms (OR 1.85, P<0.001). Analysis of FSFI and ISL domains indicated that depressive symptoms were most directly associated with worse orgasmic function, interference in sex life from stress and lack of partner, and lower general life satisfaction (P<0.05). Interestingly, greater ISL-sexual satisfaction was associated with greater odds of depressive symptoms (OR 1.40, P=0.01). Conclusion. Depressive symptoms are common in female medical students. HRFSD is associated with depressive symptoms, although the relationship is complex when psychoscial factors are included in the multivariate model. Attention to sexuality factors from student health providers may enhance quality-of-life, academic achievement, and patient care.

KW - Anxiety

KW - Depression

KW - Depressive Symptoms

KW - Female Sexual Dysfunction

KW - Medical Students

KW - Sexuality

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=79551486710&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=79551486710&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1111/j.1743-6109.2010.02085.x

DO - 10.1111/j.1743-6109.2010.02085.x

M3 - Article

C2 - 21054793

AN - SCOPUS:79551486710

VL - 8

SP - 391

EP - 399

JO - Journal of Sexual Medicine

JF - Journal of Sexual Medicine

SN - 1743-6095

IS - 2

ER -