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01-12-2013 | Original Article | Uitgave 12/2013 Open Access

Netherlands Heart Journal 12/2013

What do cardiologists know about the effects of cardiovascular agents on sexual function? A survey among Dutch cardiologists. Part I

Netherlands Heart Journal > Uitgave 12/2013
M. P. J. Nicolai, S. S. Liem, S. Both, R. C. M. Pelger, H. Putter, M. J. Schalij, H. W. Elzevier



Several cardiovascular agents, such as diuretics and β-blockers, can negatively affect sexual function, leading to noncompliance with therapy. Others such as angiotensin II receptor blockers (ARBs) can improve patients’ sexual function.


We aimed to gain insight into cardiologists’ knowledge about the effects of cardiovascular drugs on sexual function and whether they take this knowledge into account when prescribing drugs.


An anonymous questionnaire was mailed to 980 members of the Netherlands Society of Cardiologists (cardiologists and residents in training).


Almost 54 % of Dutch cardiologists responded; 414 questionnaires were analysed. Forty-five percent of cardiologists were aware that diuretics can negatively affect sexual function, 93.1 % knew about the negative effects β-blockers can have, but only 9.2 % were aware that ARBs can have positive effects on sexual health. Almost half of respondents (48.2 %) stated they change medication regularly in an attempt to improve sexual function. Experienced cardiologists said they do this significantly more often than less experienced ones.


Cardiologists’ knowledge about the effects of cardiovascular drugs on sexual health appears to be insufficient. Sexual dysfunction is not routinely taken into account when cardiologists prescribe drugs.

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Netherlands Heart Journal

Het Netherlands Heart Journal wordt uitgegeven in samenwerking met de Nederlandse Vereniging voor Cardiologie en de Nederlandse Hartstichting. Het tijdschrift is Engelstalig en wordt gratis beschikbaa ...

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Editor's comment

Let’s talk about sex