The relationship of antihypertensive drugs have a long history of association with sexual dysfunction; however, this relationship is poorly documented. There appears to be a higher rate of sexual dysfunction in untreated hypertensive men compared with normotensive men. Sexual dysfunction increases with age and is associated with physical and emotional symptoms. There are few studies assessing sexual dysfunction with female and African-American hypertensive patients. Sexual dysfunction is associated with impairment of quality of life and noncompliance. Since group data may hide individual drug effects, baseline data should be collected on all patients before initiating therapy with any antihypertensive agent. Although questionnaires may not provide objective information on sexual dysfunction, the response rate to direct questioning may be less than the response rate on a questionnaire and may be affected by the gender or race of the interviewer. Research protocols using a double-blind, placebo-controlled design should assess sexual dysfunction in men and women in a standardized fashion.
(Arch Intern Med. 1994;154:730-736)