A study on the sexual and intimacy issues of male stroke survivors in Hong Kong

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A study on the sexual and intimacy issues of male stroke survivors in Hong Kong

 

Author: Ma, Tsz-hin Benny
Title: A study on the sexual and intimacy issues of male stroke survivors in Hong Kong
Degree: M.Sc.
Year: 2007
Subject: Hong Kong Polytechnic University -- Dissertations.
Cerebrovascular disease -- Patients -- Sexual behavior.
Men -- Sexual behavior.
Department: Dept. of Rehabilitation Sciences
Pages: viii, 90 leaves : ill. ; 30 cm.
Language: English
InnoPac Record: http://library.polyu.edu.hk/record=b2174128
URI: http://theses.lib.polyu.edu.hk/handle/200/1726
Abstract: Background: Because of the resulting sensory, motor and cognitive deficits, stroke clients may have drastic changes in their sexual life, gender role identity and marital relationships. When comparing Hong Kong with overseas countries, such as United Kingdom and the USA, it seems that the sexual issues associated with stroke are neglected by the Hong Kong health care professionals. Most studies only focus on the sexual functioning and attitudes of the professional staff. It is clear that persons with disabilities are sexual beings with needs and desires for intimacy. It is necessary to have an in-depth understanding of their attitudes and concerns in sexual matters for the future planning of sexual rehabilitation. Aim: The purpose of the study was to explore, identify and describe the concepts, issues and sexual concerns of male stroke clients in Hong Kong. It included their attitudes, experiences, psychological well-being and sexual needs after a stroke. Method and data analysis: A qualitative research method which employed individual interviews was adopted in this study. Descriptive data was collected through in-depth interviews of ten Chinese male stroke clients (survivors) with ages ranging from 30-70. Data collected relates to the concepts of sexuality, changes in sexual life after a stroke, problems encountered in sexual intercourse and coping strategies, perceptions of sexual dysfunction, the health care professionals and community support, and the changes in gender role and marital relationship, as well as psychological impact due to changes in sexuality were analyzed with content analysis. Results: The results suggested that male stroke survivors still have sexual needs, but they are limited by the physical and psychosocial dysfunction associated with a stroke. Their sexual life, gender role identity and marital relationship were adversely affected. Community resources and support from health care professionals were also found to be limited for them to solve their sexual and intimacy problems. Conclusion: Stroke survivors are not asexual. Due to inadequate knowledge and conventional attitudes toward sexuality, their sexual and intimate needs are often suppressed. These needs were further hampered by insufficient professional support during the rehabilitation process. To provide more comprehensive post-stroke care and enhancement of quality of life, the health care professionals should not only change their attitudes, but also increase their knowledge on sexuality so that relevant advice and services can be provided to meet the stroke survivors' needs.

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