Navigating Intimacy: Prostate Cancer and Sexless Marriages
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Navigating Intimacy: Prostate Cancer and Sexless Marriages

One of the world’s most dangerous diseases affecting millions of men is prostate cancer. The impact on sexual functioning is one important part of this condition, which goes beyond its physical toll and frequently causes emotional and relational issues. Understanding the fundamental details of prostate cancer, its impact on male sexual performance, and possible measures for maintaining intimacy becomes critical as couples confront the scary prospect of a sexless marriage as a result of the disease.

 

 

Table Of Contents

General Facts About Prostate Cancer

How Does Prostate Cancer Impact Male Sexual Functioning?

Can I Still Have Sex If I Have Prostate Cancer?

If I Am In A Sexless Marriage Due To Cancer, What Should I Do?

Can My Partner Be Sexually Satisfied Without Traditional Intercourse?

Conclusion

 

 

 

General Facts About Prostate Cancer

 

One in eight men will receive a prostate cancer diagnosis at some point in their lives, making it the second most frequent malignancy among men worldwide. An important component of male reproductive health is the prostate, a walnut-sized gland situated just below the bladder. Although the exact reasons for prostate cancer are yet unknown, there is a risk associated with age, race, and family history (Rawla, 2019).

 

A digital rectal examination and a blood test for the prostate-specific antigen (PSA) are frequently used in the screening process for prostate cancer. Since prostate cancer usually grows slowly, early detection is crucial since early diagnosis increases the likelihood of successful therapy (Leslie et al., 2024).

 

 

 

Prostate Cancer and Sex

Photo by Marcus Aurelius

 

How Does Prostate Cancer Impact Male Sexual Functioning?

 

Prostate cancer therapies, such as radiation therapy, surgery, or hormone therapy, can frequently result in sexual dysfunction even though the disease itself may not directly influence a person’s ability to have sexual relations. Hormone therapy, for instance, has been shown to lower sexual desire and raise the risk of erectile dysfunction (Kinnaird et al., 2021).

 

The prostate is surrounded by sensitive nerve bundles which are in charge of sending signals that control sexual responses. The loss or disruption of these nerve bundles during surgery, especially radical prostatectomy, can have an impact on a man’s capacity to obtain and sustain an erection (American Cancer Society, 2023). In addition to killing cancer cells, radiation therapy can harm surrounding blood vessels and nerves, which can worsen sexual dysfunction (American Cancer Society, 2020).

 

Libido and sexual desire might decline as a result of hormone therapy (White et al., 2015), which is frequently used to block the synthesis of testosterone, a hormone that promotes the growth of prostate cancer cells (National Cancer Institute, 2021). Furthermore, heat flashes, weight gain, and exhaustion are possible adverse effects of hormone therapy that can negatively affect a man’s sexual and general well-being (White et al., 2015).

 

 

 

Can I Still Have Sex If I Have Prostate Cancer?