Up to 39% of men in the general population have PE or some form of it.

Premature ejaculation (PE) is the most common sexual dysfunction in men. When you think about sexual dysfunction in men, you may consider erectile dysfunction (ED) the most common, but that could be due to the extensive advertising for medications for ED and references in popular culture. 
Up to 39% of men in the general population have PE or some form of it. There is a genetic component in first-degree relatives, which makes PE slightly different from other sexual dysfunctions because other sexual dysfunctions do not have this degree of genetic predisposition. 
In addition to being biologically driven, PE is driven by relational, emotional, and psychological factors. Psychological factors range from temperament, attachment, emotional, cognitive, possibly stemming from history of childhood maltreatment or negative life experiences. Men with PE often seek treatment through urologists or primary care doctors before engaging in sex therapy
Some biological-based forms of PE can be treated solely by a urologist or primary care physician, but PE that involves psychological, relational, or emotional factors would be best treated using a combination of interventions, including medicine, psychotherapy, and sex therapy
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There are different types of PE and knowing what type a man has is important to determining a good treatment strategy. 

  • Lifelong PE (LPE) is when a man has always had the symptoms of premature ejaculation. 
  • Acquired PE (APE) is when there’s a period of normal or healthy ejaculatory latency, but then something happens and premature ejaculation symptoms develop. APE cases are most commonly referred to sex therapists because they are more complex in terms of what is creating the symptoms.
  • Natural Variable PE (NVPE) is when men experience PE sometimes, but not always. NVPE cases generally do not have biological, but more psychological components.
  • Premature-Like Ejaculatory Dysfunction (PLED) involves the experience or belief that a man thinks he is ejaculating too quickly but he is technically in the average range for ejaculatory function. 

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Research has shown that men with lifelong PE and acquired PE had higher rates of counseling with a doctor than men with the natural variable or PLED. Prevalence can also vary depending on a man’s personal or cultural background.

Healthcare disciplines practice within silos and interdisciplinary care is needed to adequately treat the complex nature of sexual dysfunctions. Pharmaceutical treatments, while found to be efficacious, are over-represented in the research literature due to funding resources.

Furthermore, patients frequently discontinue medications due to a variety of factors, limiting the effectiveness of medication to treat PE. Sex therapy techniques have little research supporting their effectiveness but are regularly utilized and have anecdotal success. 

Comprehensive assessment and treatment planning should be conducted to treat PE and include elements from the sexual developmental history through individual and adult partner sexual functioning. 
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For a more in-depth look at the prevalence of PE in men, sign-up for the first course in our Sexual Dysfunction Series: Premature Ejaculation – Science-Based Sex Education for Sex Therapists

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The first clinician to sign up for this course will receive a free course download and 3 AASECT CEU credits. Please use this discount code PE-Provider during the check-out process.
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Learning Objectives Include:
  • Name and recognize the prevalence rates of the various forms of premature ejaculation (PE).
  • Describe the etiologies of PE from a biopsychosocial perspective. 
  • Evaluate and explain the history of PE diagnostic criteria, current DSM-5-TR criteria, and diagnostic considerations.
  • Analyze and contrast psychological factors involved in individuals with PE, including: temperament and character, metacognition, attachment relationships, perception of control, alexithymia, sexual orientation, history of childhood maltreatment, and posttraumatic stress. 
  • Distinguish and review interdisciplinary treatments for PE, including medical interventions, urological treatments, and sex therapy.
  • Evaluate and employ the functional-sexocorporal sex therapy approach in the treatment of PE.
  • Identify a sex therapy roadmap for treating patients with PE.
  • Analyze a case study and explain a treatment plan utilizing an interdisciplinary approach to treat PE. 

For a more in-depth look at PE in men, sign up for the course today.