A systematic review looking at anodyspareunia among cisgender men and women

Nercessian, Tiga-Rose, Banbury, Samantha and Chandler, Chris (2023) A systematic review looking at anodyspareunia among cisgender men and women. Journal of sex & marital therapy, 49 (7). pp. 829-841. ISSN 1521-0715


This systematic review aims to provide an up-to-date evaluation of the available literature on anodyspareunia and treatment interventions. It aims to identify research gaps and to evaluate treatment methods in psychosexual healthcare services. Electronic searches including PubMed, PsycINFO, Web of Science, and registered clinical trials yielded 8 studies. Research centered on men who have sex with men (MSM) and cisgender women with a 3:1 ratio. In terms of causes of anodyspareunia, correlates among both MSM and cisgender women included generalized anxiety, performance anxiety, compromised well-being, lack of stimulation, lack of lubrication, and lack of sexual arousal. While research has focused on anodyspareunia among cisgender gay men, limited research has targeted other genders or sexualities including heterosexual men and lesbian and bisexual women. No research was found on intersex, transgender, and gender nonconforming people. Similarly, there were no articles that discussed or evaluated treatment strategies. The findings of this review demonstrate the paucity of research on both the condition of anodyspareunia and its treatment across genders and sexually diverse groups. Both quantitative and qualitative research would not only develop our understanding of anodyspareunia but also contribute to public health through the development of suitable treatment interventions.

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