Sexuality and Chronic Illness

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Steinke, Elaine E.

Steinke, Elaine E. 2013. Sexuality and Chronic Illness. Journal of Gerontological Nursing, v. 39:no. 11:ppg. 18-27


Sexual function is often affected in individuals living with chronic illness and their partners, and multiple comorbidities increase the likelihood of sexual dysfunction. This review focuses on the areas of cardiovascular disease, respiratory conditions, and cancer, all areas for which there are practical, evidence-based strategies to guide sexual counseling. Although nurses have been reluctant to address the topic of sexuality in practice, a growing number of studies suggest that patients want nurses to address their concerns and provide resources to them. Thus, nurses must be proactive in initiating conversations on sexual issues to fill this gap in practice.

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