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Post of the Week: Hypersexuality in Parkinson's Disease

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#1 Dr. Okun

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Posted 12 June 2011 - 02:22 PM

From Janice Miyasaki at the NPF Center of Excellence in Toronto.

Hypersexuality in Parkinson disease

Hypersexuality means being excessively interested or involved in sexual activity. This may be a change in sexual activity (either increased, cross-dressing, other change in behaviour), involvement with internet pornography, excessive use of telephone sexual services regardless of cost, extramarital affairs and seeking out prostitutes and other risky sexual behaviors.

A recent study estimated that this occurs in 18% of Parkinson patients. This is associated with medications for Parkinson disease including levodopa and dopamine agonists. In one study, reducing the dose of medications improved hypersexuality or resulted in hypersexuality completely going away.

Since hypersexuality affects the spouse/partner as well as the patient, this information needs to be shared with your doctors. Medication adjustments can make a difference.

Bostwick JM, Hecksel KA, Stevens SR, Bower JH, Ahlskog JE. Frequency of new-onset pathologic compulsive gambling or hypersexuality after drug treatment of idiopathic Parkinson disease. Mayo Clin Proc 2009;84:310-6.
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Michael S. Okun, M.D.

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