saffron improves female sexual dysfunction

As many as 43% of women suffer some form of sexual dysfunction. Like so many health conditions, female sexual dysfunction is less understood and less studied than male sexual dysfunction and treatment options are limited. That may be about to change!

Female sexual dysfunction can include desire, orgasm, arousal and pain. Saffron has been traditionally used as an aphrodisiac, and science has begun to support the tradition for sexual dysfunction in both men and women.

The latest promise of help comes from a double-blind study that gave 68 women with severe sexual dysfunction either 15mg of saffron or a placebo twice a day for 6 weeks. The women were all between 18 and 55.

Improvement in the Female Sexual Function Index (FSFI) was checked every 2 weeks. At the first 2 week check, both groups had significantly better FSFI scores. But, after that, saffron took over. After 6 weeks, FSFI scores in the saffron group had improved by 62%. That improvement was significantly better than in the placebo group.

Women in the saffron group had significantly better improvement in desire, lubrication and satisfaction. The most dramatic improvement was in satisfaction. There was also improvement in pain, but that was the least dramatic improvement.

The saffron was safe, with frequency of side effects being the same as placebo.

Earlier studies have hinted at the potential of saffron for female sexual dysfunction. In a double-blind study, women experiencing sexual dysfunction as a result of treatment with Prozac had significant improvement on total FSFI scores, as well as in arousal, lubrication and pain (Hum Psyschopharmacol. 2013;28(1):54-60).


Avicenna J Phytomed. 2022 May-Jun;12(3):257-268


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