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Sexuality is a living part of us all. It includes many aspects, such as how we feel about ourselves, intimacy, and how we communicate with others. Sexuality may include a variety of activities such as contact, touch, embrace, kissing, hand holding and discussions.

 Over half of people with chronic kidney disease have problems with sexual function. These can vary from a simple lack of interest until full orgasm impotence. For many people, this can be devastating to their self-confidence and intimidated them more in an already tense relationship. The discussion with the partner or with the doctor about sexuality or sexual problems might cause feelings of shame. Because these issues no our time make them feel uncomfortable, many people choose to ignore the problem. Whatever the cause or the difficulty, sexual problems can often be corrected.

The point may shed some sexual problems associated with chronic kidney disease, providing self-help recommendations and a list of questions to speak more easily the physician.

Causes of sexual problems


Fatigue is a major reason. All chronic diseases are tedious, and chronic kidney disease, which is often accompanied by anemia and a demanding treatment, which causes further fatigue.


Depression is another common theme. Many people all diseases pass depression periods, and one of the symptoms of depression is loss of interest in sex.


The medications can also affect the ability or desire of someone to contact. Since there may be other drugs that are equally effective without the impact of loss of sexual function or desire, it would be good to talk with your doctor about the medication taken.

Feelings about body image

To bring a peritoneal catheter, a fistula or graft, possibly causing avoid physical contact for fear that feels less Pothitos or because they worry about the thoughts of others when we look.


Some diseases, such as vascular disease and diabetes, can lead to decreased blood flow to the genital area, reduced desire for sex to vaginal dryness and sexual impotence.

How do I get help? The most important it is to feel comfortable to discuss problems. It would be good to speak with the person you feel more intimate - a doctor, a social worker, nurse or pharmacist.

    The first step is a medical evaluation to determine if the problem is physical.
Should perhaps even to approach the patient to a social worker, psychologist, psychiatrist or sexologist to look at non-medical factors.
The test is often followed by counseling and information.
To learn to speak openly with his partner are most important. Expressing personal needs, often reduced stress and improved feelings about sexuality.

For men

A common concern is probably erectile dysfunction (trouble this erection and maintenance), decreased sexual desire (low libido) and ejaculation issues. Treatment options may include counseling, implant, male hormones, drugs taken orally or intravenously. The patient should ask the doctor to recommend a specialist for erectile dysfunction for a full assessment, including review of medication.

For women

Women may also face problems of reduced sexual desire. For those who have vaginal dryness, there are many options available: creams or devices that contain estrogen may be placed in the vagina. You can still use lubricants. In addition, regular sexual stimulation in any form helps to improve the wetness of the vagina.

What can I do for the patient himself?

Apposed ideas that can help to change the way one feels about oneself.

    Be given more attention to personal grooming. Whoever looks well, feels well.
It is advised to try not to think of sex only as a sexual act, as this can cause more grief if there is limited appetite or energy. Sexuality does not have to include intercourse. There are many forms of sexual expression that does not require much energy and is pleasant, such as hugs, kisses and care. The discussion with the partner can result in pleasant ways of pleasure exchange.
The books are a good source of information on how to self-help. Local libraries and bookstores have books to deal with such issues. On the internet you can also look for useful websites: for example, there are sites where hemodialysis patients post messages on sexual dysfunction. It may prove useful to understand that sexual concerns are common, and that help is available.
The most important thing is, do not overlook the problem and there is the thought in mind that positive behavior is an important part of good physical health.

Questions to ask your doctor.

    Which medication or therapy can help with impotence.

    How one can protect the peritoneal catheter, the arterio-venous shunt or permanent catheter during sexual intercourse?

    What happens with the contraceptive in the case of hemodialysis;

    For men: they become fathers while on dialysis treatment?

    For women: they can become pregnant while on dialysis treatment?

    What about sexual activity after transplantation?

    One can have a child after the transplant?


Dr. Trigas Konstantina, Msc, MD Nephrologist, Blue Cross Patras

Private Practice (2610-450797)

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