Postoperative Sexual Activity Recommendations: Survey of Neurosurgeons/Spine Surgeons

Cara M. Thomas, Iahn Cajigas, Howard B. Levene

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective: The impact of various types of spinal surgeries on sexual health and postoperative sexual activity is a common question among both patients and health care professionals. Unfortunately, there is no clear answer to this question in the scientific literature. Our goal was to survey the current practices and recommendations of neurosurgeons to see if there was a clinical consensus. Methods: Participants in the survey included 50 spine surgeons: 47 males and 3 females. The average age of the participants was 45.7 years old, and the number of years of practice after residency was on average 11.7 years. Additional survey questions included the number of weeks recommended for patients to abstain before returning to sexual activity after specified small, medium, and large spinal surgeries. Results: We found that there were no statically significant correlations between the participants' ages or years post residency and the time response for postoperative return to sexual activity. Some answers were significantly different among the participants. The results also showed a trend for spine surgeons to recommend longer intervals for return to sexual activities after more involved surgical procedures. Conclusions: The survey results and comments demonstrate the complete lack of physician consensus regarding recommendations for postoperative return to sexual activity and the need for further study.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)e70-e75
JournalWorld neurosurgery
StatePublished - Sep 2020


  • Recommendations
  • Sexual activity
  • Spine
  • Surgery
  • Survey

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Clinical Neurology


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