PloS one 2017 11 3012(11) e0188994 doi 10.1371/journal.pone.0188994
Erectile dysfunction (ED) is common among men on opioid replacement therapy (ORT), but most previous studies exploring its prevalence and determinants yielded contrasting findings. Moreover, the impact of ED on patients’ quality of life (QoL) has been seldom explored.
To explore the prevalence and determinants of ED in men on ORT, and the impact on QoL.
In a multicentre cross-sectional study, we recruited 797 consecutive male patients on methadone and buprenorphine treatment, collected data on demographic, clinical, and psychopathological factors, and explored their role as predictors of ED and QoL through univariate and multivariate analysis. ED severity was assessed with a self-assessment questionnaire.
Nearly half of patients in our sample were sexually inactive or reported some degree of ED. Some demographic, clinical and psychopathological variables significantly differed according to the presence or absence of ED. Multivariate regression analysis indicated that age, employment, smoke, psychoactive drugs, opioid maintenance dosage, and severity of psychopathological factors significantly influenced the risk and severity of ED. QoL was worse in patients with ED and significantly correlated with ED severity. Age, education, employment, opioid maintenance dosage, ED score, and severity of psychopathology significantly influenced QoL in the multivariate analysis.
ED complaints can be explored in male opioid users on ORT through a simple and quick self-assessment tool. ED may have important effects on emotional and social well-being, and may affect outcome.