Male and female sexual dysfunction in diabetic subjects: Focus on new antihyperglycemic drugs

Giovanni Corona, Andrea M. Isidori, Antonio Aversa, Marco Bonomi, Alberto Ferlin, Carlo Foresta, Sandro La Vignera, Mario Maggi, Rosario Pivonello, Linda Vignozzi, Francesco Lombardo

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


The association between diabetes mellitus (and its micro- and macro-vascular complications) and erectile dysfunction is widely known and the presence of hypogonadism may further complicate sexual dysfunction and quality of life, given the association between hypogonadism and reduced libido, ejaculatory disorders, and depressive symptoms. However, the recent introduction of novel antidiabetic agents with a wide range of mechanism of action may have a significant impact both on male and female sexuality directly (by inducing side effects as urinary tract infections) and indirectly (improving metabolic status and reducing diabetes complications behind sexual dysfunctions). To date only few papers are reporting the sexual effects of these treatments and, often, these are not comparable in their results. Conversely, female sexual dysfunctions are somehow under-investigated. Data on prevalence is heterogeneous and specific pathogenic mechanisms, as well as the burden of psychological factors, are still heatedly debated. The aim of this narrative review is to summarize current knowledge and stressing out the need to diagnose male and female sexual dysfunctions also in light of the impact of treatments with novel antidiabetic agents. This would highlight the still unmet needs for sexual care in a diabetes care setting and could represent an incentive for future discussions, as well as a required theoretical starting point for studies on this subject.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)57-65
Number of pages9
JournalReviews in Endocrine and Metabolic Disorders
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Mar 1 2020


  • Antidiabetic agents
  • Diabetes mellitus
  • Erectile function
  • Female sexual dysfunctions
  • Sexual dysfunctions

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Endocrinology


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