Archives of Sexual Behavior

, Volume 23, Issue 2, pp 135–152 | Cite as

Sexual sequelae of antihypertensive drugs: Treatment effects on self-report and physiological measures in middle-aged male hypertensives

  • Raymond C. Rosen
  • John B. Kostis
  • Albert Jekelis
  • Lynn S. Taska


Antihypertensive drugs are commonly associated with adverse side effects in both clinical and laboratory studies. We investigated the sexual sequelae of several major classes of antihypertensive drugs (e.g., beta blockers, central alpha agonists, diuretics) in normal males and in hypertensive patients. We compared the effects of four widely used agents (methyldopa, propranolol, atenolol, hydrochlorothiazide-triamterene) and placebo, in a selected sample of 21 sexually dysfunctional male hypertensives, 13 of whom completed all five phases of the study. Each study drug was administered for a 1-month treatment period, followed by a 2-week, single-blind washout phase, according to a randomized, Latin square crossover design. Dependent variables for the study included a broad range of hormonal, NPT, and self-report measures of sexual response. Results indicated a lack of consistent drug effects on measures of sexual response, although more frequent sexual and nonsexual side effects were observed with methyldopa and propranolol. As in our previous studies, age was negatively correlated with both hormonal and NPT measures, whereas changes in blood pressure were not significantly related to sexual function scores. Results do not support the hypothesis that sexually dysfunctional males are at greater risk for adverse sexual sequelae when treated with centrally active agents or diuretics.

Key words

sexual function antihypertensive drugs hypertension 


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Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  • Raymond C. Rosen
    • 1
  • John B. Kostis
    • 1
  • Albert Jekelis
    • 1
  • Lynn S. Taska
    • 1
  1. 1.University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey—Robert Wood Johnson Medical School and Rutgers UniversityPiscatawayUSA

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