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Weight Loss Surgery Gives Women a Sexual Boost

Update Date: Nov 04, 2013 05:06 PM EST

Weight loss surgery may improve women's sex lives, a new study suggests.

Researchers found that women who underwent bariatric surgery experienced significant improvements in overall sexual function. Researchers noted that most reproductive hormones and psychological status lasted for over two years following surgery.

The findings revealed that women who reported the lowest quality of sexual function before surgery saw the most dramatic improvements one year after surgery. Researchers said that this was on par with women who reported the highest quality of sexual function before surgery.

"For many people, sex is an important part of quality of life. The massive weight losses typically seen following bariatric surgery are associated with significant improvements in quality of life," lead author David Sarwer, PhD, professor of Psychology in Psychiatry and Surgery in the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, said in a news release. "This is one of the first studies to show that women also experience improvements in their sexual functioning and satisfaction, as well as significant improvements in their reproductive hormones."

The latest study involved 106 women with an average Body Mass Index of 44.5 who underwent bariatric surgery. Researchers said that 85 of the women had gastric bypass and 21 had gastric banding procedures.

The study revealed that women lost an average of 32.7 percent of their original body weight after the first year, and 33.5 percent at the end of the second year.

The findings revealed improvements in overall sexual function including desire, arousal, lubrication and overall satisfaction.

Researchers found that bariatric surgery also led to significant improvements in all hormone levels of interest, which may impact both sexual behavior as well as fertility.

Participants also reported improvement in all aspects of health and weight-related quality of life, as well as improvements in body image, depressive symptoms and relationship satisfaction.

The findings are published in the journal JAMA Surgery.

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