One hundred and twenty cases of enduring sexual dysfunction following treatment

Int J Risk Saf Med. 2014;26(2):109-16. doi: 10.3233/JRS-140617.


Background: There have been reports for over a decade linking serotonin reuptake inhibitors, finasteride and isotretinoin with enduring sexual dysfunction after treatment stops.

Objective: To explore the clinical pictures linked to all 3 drugs.

Methods: We have selected 120 reports to reporting the problem and mined these for data on age, gender, drug of use, and impact of the problem.

Results: The data make it clear that the three drugs show extensive overlap in symptom profile, regardless of sex or country of origin.

Conclusions: The availability of 120 reports from over 20 countries add to the case for the validity of the syndrome. This is severe and enduring condition can result in death. An understanding of its physiology and an approach to treatment are needed.

Keywords: SSRIs; erectile dysfunction; finasteride; genital anesthesia; isotretinoin; loss of libido.

MeSH terms

  • 5-alpha Reductase Inhibitors / adverse effects*
  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Female
  • Finasteride / adverse effects*
  • Humans
  • Isotretinoin / adverse effects*
  • Keratolytic Agents / adverse effects*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors / adverse effects*
  • Sexual Dysfunction, Physiological / chemically induced*
  • Young Adult


  • 5-alpha Reductase Inhibitors
  • Keratolytic Agents
  • Serotonin Uptake Inhibitors
  • Finasteride
  • Isotretinoin