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Antidepressant treatment of premature ejaculation: discontinuation rates and prevalence of side effects for dapoxetine and paroxetine in a naturalistic setting


The present study aimed to investigate prevalence of and reasons for selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) discontinuation, and compare the two most common SSRIs used in premature ejaculation (PE) treatment, in naturalistic settings (that is, outside clinical trials). The sample consisted of 132 Finnish men with a mean age of 42.5 years (s.d.=10.6) who had received medical treatment for lifelong PE. The men were enlisted for the study after identifying individuals from the third author’s (a physician specializing in sexual medicine) patient registry. Participants responded to a secure, online questionnaire. PE treatment-related side effects of, and discontinuation rates for, different SSRIs were retrospectively self-reported. Treatment efficacy and happiness with treatment were retrospectively self-assessed. Discontinuation rates were uniformly high, ranging from 28.8 to 70.6% between different SSRIs. Dapoxetine was associated with the highest dropout rates (70.6%), and paroxetine the lowest, discontinuation rates. Limited efficacy and side effects were the most common reasons for discontinuation. Paroxetine was more effective and better tolerated than dapoxetine. A considerable number of patients chose to spontaneously discontinue treatment, especially so in the case of dapoxetine, corroborating recent studies conducted in naturalistic settings. Further research efforts are necessary to develop new and improve existing PE treatment alternatives.

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This research was funded by Grant No. 138291, a personal post-doctoral research grant awarded to the first author, from the Academy of Finland. The funders had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript.

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Correspondence to P Jern.

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During the past 3 years, the third author (Dr Piha) has received financial compensation from Eli Lilly (lecturer, conducting scientific studies), Janssen-Cilag (conducting scientific studies), PharmaNord (lecturer, consultant) and MEDA (lecturer, consultant). None of the aforementioned have had any role in the present study, including data collection, preparation or analysis.

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Jern, P., Johansson, A., Piha, J. et al. Antidepressant treatment of premature ejaculation: discontinuation rates and prevalence of side effects for dapoxetine and paroxetine in a naturalistic setting. Int J Impot Res 27, 75–80 (2015).

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