Effects of saffron (Crocus sativus) on sexual dysfunction among men and women: A systematic review and meta-analysis

Avicenna J Phytomed. 2019 Sep-Oct;9(5):419-427.


Objective: This systematic review and meta-analysis study evaluated the effect of saffron (Crocus sativus) on sexual dysfunction and its subscales (dimensions) among men and women.

Material and methods: PubMed/Medline, ScienceDirect, Google Scholar, as well as Scientific Information Database (www.SID.ir) and Magiran (as Persian databases) were searched without any time and language restrictions. Statistical pooling was done using the random effects model.

Results: A total of 5 studies comprising 173 participants were included in this systematic review and meta-analysis. The analysis showed a statistically significant positive effect of saffron on sexual dysfunction (Std diff in means=0.811; 95% CI, 0.356-1.265) and its subscales (Std diff in means=0.493; 95% CI, 0.261-0.724). Heterogeneity indexes such as Cochran Q index and I 2 indicated a heterogeneity among the included studies (Q=9:981, df:4, (p=0.041), I2=59.92%). There was no evidence of publication bias in these studies.

Conclusion: In general, saffron was proven effective in improving sexual dysfunction and its subscales among participants; this effect was different on different dimensions of sexual dysfunction. Further studies are required to extend these initial findings.

Keywords: Crocus sativus; Saffron; Sexual; Sexual dysfunction.

Publication types

  • Review