Are aspects of study design associated with the reported prevalence of female sexual difficulties?

Hayes, Richard D., Bennett, Catherine M., Dennerstein, Lorraine, Taffe, John R and Fairley, Christopher K 2008, Are aspects of study design associated with the reported prevalence of female sexual difficulties?, Fertility and sterility, vol. 90, no. 3, pp. 497-505, doi: 10.1016/j.fertnstert.2007.07.1297.

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Title Are aspects of study design associated with the reported prevalence of female sexual difficulties?
Author(s) Hayes, Richard D.
Bennett, Catherine M.ORCID iD for Bennett, Catherine M.
Dennerstein, Lorraine
Taffe, John R
Fairley, Christopher K
Journal name Fertility and sterility
Volume number 90
Issue number 3
Start page 497
End page 505
Total pages 9
Publisher Elsevier
Place of publication New York, N.Y.
Publication date 2008-09
ISSN 1556-5653
Keyword(s) female sexual dysfunction
multivariate analysis
prevalence estimates
study design
Summary Objective: To investigate associations between the prevalence of sexual  difficulties reported in published studies and design features of those studies to determine if differences in design contribute to variation in prevalence estimates.
Design: Systematic review, multivariate analysis.
Setting: Studies published internationally in English.
Patient(s): Not applicable.
Intervention(s): None.
Main Outcome Measure(s): Prevalence estimates of difficulty with desire, arousal, orgasm, and sexual pain reported in published studies.
Result(s): Our systematic literature search identified 1,380 publications. Fifty-five studies met our inclusion criteria (reporting prevalence, sample size and response rate, sample size greater than 100, not clinic based). Reported prevalence of sexual difficulty varied across studies (up to tenfold). Eleven aspects of research conduct in these studies were included in our multivariate analysis as explanatory variables. Five aspects of study design and conduct (data collection procedures, inclusion criteria, duration of sexual difficulty recorded, sample size, and response rate) were associated with the reported prevalence of at least one type of sexual difficulty independently of likely predictors of true variation in prevalence: study location, study year, and age range of participants.
Conclusion(s): This review provides evidence that study design may influence reported prevalence estimates of female sexual difficulties and contribute to the wide variation in published estimates.

Language eng
DOI 10.1016/j.fertnstert.2007.07.1297
Field of Research 170105 Gender Psychology
110319 Psychiatry (incl Psychotherapy)
Socio Economic Objective 970117 Expanding Knowledge in Psychology and Cognitive Sciences
HERDC Research category C1.1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
ERA Research output type C Journal article
Copyright notice ©2008, Elsevier
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