Denise Marie Stephens, Fielding's School of Psychology
The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between sexual behavior and quality of life (QOL) within a sample of patients diagnosed with schizophrenia. Subjects were recruited from mental health clinics in Southern California. They include 102 male and female outpatients between 18 and 65 years of age with a clinical diagnosis of schizophrenia, which was confirmed through review of medical records. Demographic variables including gender, ethnicity, sexual behavior, and QOL were assessed. The Arizona Sexual Experiences Scale Total Score (ASEX) and the Changes in Sexual Functioning Questionnaire-14 Total Score (CSFQ-14) were used to predict QOL, represented by the Quality of Life Enjoyment and Satisfaction Questionnaire-Short Form Total Score (Q-LES-Q-SF). Multiple regression analysis examined the three hypotheses. Sexual behavior was found to have a predictive effect on the QOL in patients diagnosed with schizophrenia. Limitations that may have influenced the findings include the use of self-report measures and the issue of sexual behavior being a sensitive and personal subject matter for individuals to report. Implications and recommendations for future research are identified to further examine the needs of the targeted population.
Keywords: Schizophrenia, Sexual Behavior, Quality of Life