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sexual preoccupation post stroke
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ForLouis posted:
My 85 year old father had a small stroke last year. He is a somewhat changed man but manages now to live on his own. But in recent months he has been very preoccupied with sex. He bought a few "instructional" sex DVDs, then he drove hundreds of miles to ask a woman whom he previously didn't like to have sex with him. Thankfully she turned him down. My question: I have been told that this type of new behavior may be due to frontal lobe damage. Does this sound correct?
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Richard C Senelick, MD responded:
Behavioral changes are common after damage to the frontal lobes. This can be from a stroke, brain injury or dementia. If your father had a small stroke, I would not assume that his preoccupation with sex is a result of the "small" stroke. If he is having multiple small strokes he may be developing a multi-infarct dementia with behavioral changes. This would need attention and possibily a change in medication.

If he does not feel there is a problem, it may be difficult to get him to go to a doctor. He should be evaluated for dementia or multiple strokes. Sexual inappropriateness is a difficult problem to deal with at any age. We see it commonly in sverely brain injured young people and is always a problem for the entire family.

If his doctor is uncomfortable dealing with the problem, ask the doctor for a referral to someone who is comfortable. If you father is resistant to going to the doctor, call the doctor and ask them to call your father in for a "routine" follow-up and hopefully they can order thje necessary tests.

Good Luck.
After your stroke you may be experiencing a new normal, but remember what George Eliot said- It is never too late to be what you might have been. You still can achieve new goals.


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Richard C. Senelick M.D. is a physician specializing in both neurology and the subspecialty of neurorehabilitation. He did his undergraduate and medic...More

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