Help-seeking behaviour for sexual problems: the global study of sexual attitudes and behaviors

Int J Clin Pract. 2005 Jan;59(1):6-16. doi: 10.1111/j.1742-1241.2005.00382.x.


The Global Study of Sexual Attitudes and Behaviors (GSSAB) investigated various aspects of sex and relationships among 27,500 men and women aged 40-80 years. Here, we report help-seeking behaviours for sexual problems in this population. A questionnaire was administered using the accepted survey method in each country. Although almost half of all sexually active respondents had experienced at least one sexual problem, less than 19% of them (18.0% of men and 18.8% of women) had attempted to seek medical help for their problem(s). The most frequent action taken by men and women was to talk to their partner (39%). Only 9% of men and women had been asked about their sexual health by a doctor in a routine visit during the past 3 years. Although sexual problems are highly prevalent, few men and women seek medical help for these problems. Overall, men and women show similar help-seeking behaviours.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Attitude to Health
  • Female
  • Health Surveys
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Patient Acceptance of Health Care / statistics & numerical data*
  • Prevalence
  • Sexual Behavior
  • Sexual Dysfunction, Physiological / epidemiology*
  • Sexual Dysfunction, Physiological / therapy
  • Sexual Partners