You Can't Make This Stuff Up

Which is why the writers of crappy TV shows like Grey's Anatomy probably scour the internets for stories like these. The one time I caught an episode there was a patient with Persistent Genital Arousal Disorder, which turns out to be a real phenomenon. Though like Restless Leg Syndrome, it strikes me as one of those odd disorders that occurs as a side effect of other psychotropic drugs or hormone therapies. Then again, I'm sure there are other causes of PGAD linked to menopause or pregnancy that send the nerves and hormones out of whack (see a video blurb on 20/20 here).

Anyway, here's the real catch - the best medication for PGAD? Anti-depressants. The decrease of libido associated with many anti-deps, Paxil in particular, are so extreme, they actually help ameliorate the symptoms of this surreal condition. Unfortunately, in the blunt-instrument-treatment of anti-deps, they can also masterbate...i mean...exacerbate the problem (I'm sorry):

"Dearmon [a PSAS sufferer] was about to embark on a long road trip in 2000 when she had a panic attack. She knew the car’s vibrations would be torturous, so she visited her primary care physician, who prescribed the antidepressant Paxil, a drug that lists decreased libido as a possible side effect.

"It had a good benefit," she said. "It put a damper on the sensations; they weren’t as strong. I could masturbate once and as time went on, it was every other day; then every few days. Now, I can go until the seventh or 10th day — and by then I can’t even concentrate."

Unfortunately, Paxil doesn’t work for everyone with PGAD. Some patients have said antidepressants actually act as a trigger to the disorder, Leiblum wrote."

(from Furious Seasons)

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