[Effect of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy on Sexual Satisfaction, Marital Adjustment, and Levels of Depression and Anxiety Symptoms in Couples with Vaginismus].

Turk Psikiyatri Derg 2017 ;28(3):172-180

Objective: The aim of this study was to assess the effect of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) on sexual functions of women with vaginismus and their husbands, their marital adjustment, and their levels of depression and anxiety symptoms.

Method: Twenty-six couples diagnosed as vaginismus according to DSM-IV-TR diagnostic criteria in gynecology outpatient clinics of Izmir Ege Maternity Hospital and Gynecological Diseases Training and Research Hospital were included in the study. The couples were treated with CBT through 50-minute sessions once a week. Pre- and post-treatment, all couples were assessed using a Personal Information Form, Golombok-Rust Inventory of Sexual Satisfaction, Dyadic Adjustment Scale, Beck Depression Inventory, and Beck Anxiety Inventory.

Results: There were significant differences in the total and all subscales' scores of sexual functions, significant increase in the marital adjustment, and a significant decrease in anxiety and depression symptom levels after CBT in women who completed the therapy (n = 20). In the husbands, significant recoveries were observed after the therapy in sexual functions total scores and subscales of satisfaction, avoidance, and impotence. However, there was no change in frequency, communication, sensuality, and in the premature ejaculation domains. Also, the marital adjustment scores increased, and significant decreases were observed in depression and anxiety symptom levels.

Conclusion: It was observed that CBT is an appropriate therapy approach for vaginismus, and beneficial effects were observed in both women and their husbands in sexual functions, marital adjustment, and levels of depression and anxiety symptoms decreased.

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May 2018
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