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Ask the Experts

Question:

Are some people at higher risk of getting sexual side effects from antidepressant treatment?

Answered by: David Hellerstein

There is really no strong evidence that some people are at higher risk of getting sexual side effects from antidepressant medication. One study indicates that men had a higher frequency of medication induced sexual dysfunction (62.4%) than women (56.9%), although women had a higher severity of dysfunction (2). Some pre-existing medical conditions may make a person more vulnerable to sexual side effects--illnesses such as preexisting erectile dysfunction, cardiovascular disease, or diabetes.