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Loss of libido

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Can anyone comment on this? I've read it may be somewhat common, but I've never personally known anyone other than me to experience this.  I've been on meds about 6 months and I have no sex drive at all.  I am male 38 years old.  Thanks,  Sam in 'bama

Hey Sam,

Well, yep, I've experienced it. What I found is its more of a mental block in my case rather than a physcial side effect of my meds.

It took me a while to over come it, pardon the double entendre. For the longest time, I didn't even think of sex.

Then, when I did become interested again, I couldn't "function," if you know what I mean. I could get things started, but couldn't finish what I had started.

That passed eventually.

Hope your's doesn't last as long as mine did. Had I known then what I know now, I would have sought out counseling.



Loss of libido (or sexual dysfunction generally) could be caused by a number of different factors, either individually or in combination. Could be that:

1. Undiagnosed or untreated depression. Loss of libido is in fact one of the diagnostic criteria for determining whether a person is depressed or not. Anxiety and guilt can also be "downers."

2. Hypogonadism -- low levels of testosterone (caused either by the meds you take or HIV itself).

3. ARVs. There's been some, inconclusive, research to suggest that anti-retrovirals are associated with sexual dysfunction. Out of three studies published in JAIDS in 2002, two found some association between protease inhibitors and sexual dysfunction (one of these studies found ritonavir, Norvir, to be the biggest "culprit"), the third didn't find a link.

4. Use of certain anti-depressants or drugs used to treat high BP and cholesterol.

5. Excessive use of recreational drugs and alcohol.

So much for the possible causes. Sorry to hear about your problem. I'm assuming (perhaps incorrectly) that the loss of libido occurred only after you tested positive and started taking meds. Have you spoken to your doctor about it, or a therapist? That's a first step; and I'd also suggest that you get your testosterone levels checked (total as well as free) -- if they're low or low-normal (within the parameters for your age), supplementation is an option.

Here's hoping you have constant erections, and a rampaging sex life, soon enough.  ;)


Joe K:
Hey Sam,

Sorry to hear about the problem, but I've been there dozens of times over the years.  One thing that really works for me is to supplement my Testosterone each week, because even though I test at a normal level, my normal level is way too low for me to function sexually.  Ask your doc if he/she has done a test for test and even if you test normal, maybe try supplementing for a month to see if it makes a difference.


Would you mind sharing the specifics of your normal level and weekly supplementation dose? Thanks.



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