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Rheumatoid Arthritis and Sexual Dysfunction

Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) has been linked to sexual problems for both men and women.

In a study published in the medical journal Clinical Rheumatology in November 2011, about 54% of men and 46% of women participating said they had some kind of sexual dysfunction. All of the participants had RA.

For women, problems with orgasm and arousal were among the most common complaints. Many women also reported issues with overall sexual satisfaction.

For men, the most common problem was erectile dysfunction.

Another study, published in a letter in the January 4, 2012 issue of Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases, found that men with rheumatoid arthritis had a two-thirds greater risk of developing erectile dysfunction than men who didn’t have RA.

Rheumatoid arthritis is a type of inflammatory arthritis that can affect joints all over the body. RA is also an autoimmune disease, which means the body’s immune system attacks its own tissues. In the case of RA, the immune system attacks the synovium, a membrane that lines the joints.

People with rheumatoid arthritis usually have pain, swelling, and a more limited range of motion. There is no cure for RA.

If you believe you have sexual issues caused by RA, be sure to see your doctor.

Arthritis shouldn’t interfere with your ability to enjoy sex, however. Sometimes, couples just need to make some adjustments. For more information and tips, click here.