Skip to main content

Table 1 Studies related to the effects of sex therapy on sexual dysfunction

From: Sex therapy for female sexual dysfunction

Study (Author/Year) N Objective Conclusion Reference
Asirdas et al. 1975 23 (11 male and 12 female) Systematic desensitization vs. classical conditioning. 14 subjects reported satisfaction after treatment, with better results in conditioning group. [7]
Letourneau et al. 1997 25 women with Sexual Arousal Disorder To create conditioned stimuli that could evoke sexual physiological and psychological responses. The CS was not capable of evoking the same responses as the unconditioned stimulus. [8]
Riley et al. 1978 20 women Directed masturbation vs. sensate focus. Masturbatory group were more capable of reaching orgasm. [9]
Reisinger 1978 6 women Masturbatory training associated with erotic stimulation. The program was effective to reach orgasm. [10]
Andersen 1981 30 primary nonorgasmic women Directed masturbation vs. systematic desensitization Masturbatory group were more capable of reaching orgasm. [11]
Everaerd 1982 48 couples Systematic desensitization vs. MJ (sensate focus and genital stimulation) vs. combined treatment. MJ group had a faster response. [12]
Crowe et al. 1981 48 couples One with a couple of therapists vs. one with only one therapist. Both groups were more interested in sex after treatment. [13]
Everaerd et al. 1981 48 couples MJ treatment vs. therapy focused on communication with no sexual interventions. Women seemed to benefit from both forms of therapy, but sex therapy had more rapid results than communication therapy. [14]
Kilmann et al. 1987 11 couples Communication Skills plus Sexual skills vs. Sexual Skills plus Communication Skills. No significant differences were found between the orders in which communication skills were presented. [15]
Fichten et al. 1983 23 couples Bibliotherapy with minimal therapist contact vs. classic couples therapy vs. group therapy. Sensate focus and ban of intercourse led to an increase in enjoyment of non-coital sexual activities. [16]
Libman et al. 1984 23 couples Standard Couples Therapy (one hour per week with a therapist for 14 weeks) vs. Group Therapy (eight women, and partners only participated at three time points: beginning, middle and end of therapy) vs. bibliotherapy with minimal therapist contact. All formats improved sexuality, but standard couples therapy had better results. [17]
Fichten et al. 1986 23 couples Standard Couples Therapy (one hour per week with a therapist for 14 weeks) vs. Group Therapy (eight women, and partners only participated at three time points: beginning, middle and end of therapy) vs. bibliotherapy with minimal therapist contact. Affective and cognitive measures such as satisfaction and happiness had improved more than behavioral measures. [18]
Morokoff et al. 1986 43 couples Heiman and LoPiccolo manual in 2 groups: minimal therapist contact vs. full therapist contact. The group with minimal therapist contact had better results. [19]
Dodge et al. 1982 13 women Heiman and LoPiccolo manual in 2 groups: minimal therapist contact vs. control. Subjects improved in all measures and the gains were maintained in 6 month follow-up. [20]
Spence 1985 50 women Divided by primary or secondary orgasmic dysfunction in three conditions: group, individual e waiting-list control. Both forms of treatment showed efficacy, but women with primary OD had worse outcomes. [21]
Trudel et al. 1983 12 women Kegel’s pelvic exercises vs. sexual awareness, respiratory training and muscle relaxation. Kegel’s group didn’t show much improvement in sexual response. [22]
Chambless et al. 1984 73 women Kegel’s pelvic exercises vs. sexual awareness, respiratory training and muscle relaxation. Kegel’s group didn’t show much improvement in sexual response. [23]
Trudel et al. 2001 74 couples with hypoactive sexual desire disorder CBT vs. waiting list control. 74% had remission of their symptoms. [24]
Ter Kuile et al. 2007 117 women with vaginismus CBT program vs. bibliotherapy vs. waiting list control group. From 83 women in CBT group, 27 (33%) reported full penetration. [25]
Masheb et al. 2009 50 women with vulvodynia Compared CBT and supportive therapy. Both approaches were effective, with 41.7% of women reporting a 33% reduction in pain scores. [26]
Desrochers et al. 2010 97 women with vestibulodynia CBT vs. topical treatment with cream. Both groups showed improvements in pain scores, but at follow-up, the CBT group continued to show improvement. [27]
van Lankeveld et al. 2001 199 couples CBT bibliotherapy with minimum therapist contact by telephone vs. waiting list control group. Treatment group had greater improvements and women with vaginismus seemed to have the greatest benefits from the program. [28]
Mathews et al. 1983 48 couples Combination of testosterone or placebo treatment; sex therapy with monthly or weekly sessions; a female therapist or female-male couple of therapists. Better outcomes were in placebo plus weekly sessions. [29]
Zimmer 1987 NA Marital therapy and sex therapy vs. placebo and sex therapy Both groups improved but marital group had more consistent results. [30]
Jones et al. 2011 39 women Evaluate an internet-based based on CBT. Treatment group had improvements in sex life but not remission of symptoms. [31]
Silverstein et al. 2011 44 (14 male and 30 female) Evaluate mindfulness training. Women showed faster responses to sexual stimuli. [32]