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Contempo Updates
Clinician's Corner
December 17, 2003

Sexual Activity in Patients With Angina

Author Affiliations

Author Affiliation: Department of Medicine, Stanford University School of Medicine, Palo Alto, Calif.


Contempo Updates Section Editor: Sarah Pressman Lovinger, MD, and Catherine Meyer, MD, Fishbein Fellows.

JAMA. 2003;290(23):3129-3132. doi:10.1001/jama.290.23.3129

Coital angina is angina that occurs during the minutes or hours following sexual activity. More than 6 million individuals in the United States experience angina pectoris.1 Coital angina appears to represent less than 5% of all anginal attacks. For various reasons, fewer middle aged or older women engage in sexual activity than age-matched men.2 Accordingly, the prevalence of coital angina is higher in men than in women. The comparative physical demands of sexual activity in men and women are unknown. Frequency of coitus diminishes with age in both women and men,2 especially after the onset of coronary artery disease, which occurs some 10 years later in women than in men.1