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January 1961

Amphetamine Addiction and Disturbed Sexuality

Author Affiliations

CAMPERDOWN, N.S.W., AUSTRALIA; Professor of Psychiatry, University of Sydney (Dr. Trethowan). Senior Medical Officer, N.S.W. Division of Mental Hygiene (Dr. Bell).

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1961;4(1):74-78. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1961.01710070076009

Among the known results of addiction to amphetamine there is apparently a considerable variation of sexual effects. This is to some degree in contrast with the relative uniformity of other symptoms. However, on closer investigation it may be seen that this variability is more apparent than real, the differences being related to the particular type of sexual organization of the individual addict. A failure to recognize this explains the inconsistent opinions expressed in the literature.

One commonly held view is that amphetamine decreases sexual drive. Guttman1 found no evidence of sexual excitation from amphetamine, while Knapp2 recorded that 2 of his cases spoke of a decrease in sexual feeling. In contrast Waud3 observed increased libido during and for a short period after amphetamine inhalation. Similarly Bett,4 Carr,5 and Monroe and Drell6 observed that amphetamine induced erotic sensations and caused