The weighted effect for women receiving placebo was a 3.62 (95% CI 3.29–3.94) improvement on the Female Sexual Function Index vs an increase of 5.35 (95% CI 4.13–6.57) in the treatment group
67.7% of the treatment effect for female sexual dysfunction is accounted for by placebo
There is a positive therapeutic effect with current medications, but it is suboptimal
There is an ongoing need for more efficacious treatment for female sexual dysfunction
The authors state “One key limitation is that the percent of improvement accounted for by placebo varied across studies. This suggests that the placebo effect may not account for 67.7% of the treatment effect for all medications. However, the placebo effect accounted for greater than 50% of the treatment effect in seven of eight component trials.”
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