Persistent genital arousal disorder (also known as persistent sexual arousal syndrome and restless genital syndrome) is defined as feelings of spontaneous, persistent and intense genital arousal with or without orgasm, with or without genital engorgement, in the absence of sexual desire. This rare and unique sexual arousal problem is extremely distressing for women who experience it and many do not report this sexual complaint to physicians because of embarrassment, humiliation, shame and frustration. Feelings of arousal are usually very powerful and extreme and persist for extended periods (hours, days or weeks). Orgasm may provide several hours of relief but in most women with persistent genital arousal disorder the forceful arousal symptoms return quickly. Women who have persistent genital arousal disorder cannot concentrate on even mundane projects because it is impossible to ignore the constant arousal.
Evaluation of a women suspected of having persistent sexual arousal syndrome involves a detailed psychologic evaluation, sexual, medical and psychosocial history, physical examination, laboratory tests of blood hormone levels and specialized testing of genital sensation and genital blood flow.
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