Investigation of Adherence to Immunosuppressive Therapy, Perceived Spousal Support and Sexual Dysfunction in Female Liver Recipients

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IntroductionLiver recipients to adhere to immunosuppressive therapy and cope with their health problems after liver transplantation are very important. Sexual dysfunction is common in transplant patients; however, previous studies mostly focused on male organ recipients. This study aimed to examine the adherence to immunosuppressive therapy, perceived spousal support, and sexual dysfunction in female liver recipients.MethodsThis is a descriptive study and included a total of 184 female liver recipients. Data collection was done at three different transplant centers. Data were collected using a personal information form, the Immunosuppressant Therapy Adherence Scale, the Arizona Sexual Experience Scale, and the Spouse Support Scale and analyzed using descriptive statistical methods, regression analysis, and Pearson correlation analysis.ResultsThe mean age of female liver recipients was 41.03 +/- 6.77 years, 69.6% of them were married, and 60.3% had moderate income. Due to immunosuppressive drugs, 51.1% of them had gastrointestinal issues, 38.6% had diabetes mellitus and endocrine issues. In addition, 50% and 30.4% of them had full and moderate adherence to immunosuppressive therapy, respectively. In this study, it was determined that as the social support perception of female liver recipients increased, sexual life improved (p < 0.05).ConclusionsAs adherence to immunosuppressive therapy in female liver recipients increased, their sexual dysfunctions increased. There was a correlation between sexual dysfunction and spousal support in female liver recipients.Policy ImplicationsThis study emphasized the effect of immunosuppressive drugs on sexual dysfunctions in female liver recipients, therefore recommends that female liver recipients with sexual dysfunction be referred to psychotherapeutic practices.


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Female, Immunosuppressive, Liver, Liver Recipients, Sexual Dysfunction, Spousal Support, Transplantation


Sexuality Research and Social Policy

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