A Double-Blind Study of Citalopram Versus Placebo in the Treatment of Compulsive Sexual Behaviors in Gay and Bisexual Men
J Clin Psychiatry 2006;67(12):1968-1973
© Copyright 2017 Physicians Postgraduate Press, Inc.
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Objective: Compulsive sexual behavior
(CSB) is a condition characterized by loss of
control over sexual behavior and repeated negative
consequences, including unsafe sex. Selective
serotonin reuptake inhibitors have been found to
reduce CSB symptomatology in open-label trials.
The objective of this study was to conduct a
preliminary double-blind, placebo-controlled
evaluation of the efficacy, acceptability, and tolerability
of citalopram in the treatment of CSB.
Method: Twenty-eight men who have sex
with men who met the threshold for CSB on the
basis of existing validated measures participated in
a 12-week, double-blind trial of citalopram 20 to
60 mg/day to evaluate its effects on CSB symptoms. The primary efficacy measure was the
Yale-Brown Obsessive Compulsive Scale-Compulsive Sexual Behavior. The study was conducted
from June 2002 to April 2004.
Results: Significant treatment effects
were obtained for sexual desire/drive (p < .05) and
frequency of masturbation (p < .01) and
pornography use (p < .05). Both groups reduced
sexual risk, but did not differ significantly.
Conclusions: This study provides partial
support for the effectiveness of citalopram for
reducing symptoms of CSB in this population.
Larger-scale trials are recommended to determine
the public health benefits of this treatment.