Objectives: To investigate prospectively the effects of the selective beta 1 adrenoceptor blocker bisoprolol on sexuality of men with hypertension.
Design: In newly diagnosed patients (group I): double-blind, crossover, placebo controlled. In men with hypertension on antihypertensive treatment (group II): crossover design.
Setting: Large area in and around Rotterdam, The Netherlands.
Patients: Twenty-six men (criteria: between 25 and 70; no disease etc. known to affect sexual functioning) were recruited through their general practitioners. Group I (n = 13) fulfilled the selection criteria, sitting blood pressure systolic > or = 160 mm Hg and/or diastolic > or = 95 mm Hg, measured on 3 different days. Group II (n = 13) patients already on antihypertensive treatment.
Main outcome measures: Data on blood pressure. Qualitative and quantitative data on sexuality through questionnaires, including personal and sexual history, sexual functioning, sexual satisfaction and erectile difficulties.
Results: Bisoprolol is an effective antihypertensive drug with no detrimental effects on sexuality in newly diagnosed men with hypertension. In men already on antihypertensive medication bisoprolol improved sexuality in some parameters, i.e. firmness of erection during coitus, contentedness with sexual functioning and satisfaction with own sexuality.
Conclusion: Bisoprolol is an effective antihypertensive agent with no sexual side effects.