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Perceived Impact of Limb Amputation on Sexual Activity: A Study of Adult Amputees
Gail M. Williamson and Andrew S. Walters
The Journal of Sex Research
Vol. 33, No. 3, Bodies Besieged: The Impact of Chronic and Serious Physical Illness on Sexuality, Passion, and Desire (1996), pp. 221-230
Published by: Taylor & Francis, Ltd.
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3813582
Page Count: 10
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Although research amply indicates that limb amputation poses serious threats to psychological well-being, little is known about the role of sexual activity in this process. In this study of 76 amputees, three fourths of the participants reported that amputation had restricted their sexual activities to some extent. Among the variables predicting more negative impact on sexual activity were older age, being unmarried, and greater feelings of amputation-fostered self-consciousness in intimate situations. Higher levels of perceived negative impact of amputation on sexual activity, in turn, were related to more symptoms of depression, and in fact, impact on sexual activity emerged as the most consistent predictor of depressive symptomatology. Few participants (less than 10%) reported having received advice from health care practitioners about how amputation might affect their sexual activity. Results are discussed in terms of implications for interventions aimed at improving adjustment to limb amputation.
The Journal of Sex Research © 1996 Taylor & Francis, Ltd.