Persistent Genital Arousal Disorder (PGAD) or Persistent Sexual Arousal Syndrome (PGAS) also known as Restless Genital Syndrome (REGS) is a condition where one feels spontaneous, incessant and uncontrollable genital arousal unrelated to feelings of sexual desire. At the Center we have treated women of all ages with this condition. It was first documented in 2001 by Dr. Sandra Leiblum. Orgasm generally provides temporary relief but within minutes or hours the symptoms return.
Many women who suffer from this condition often go a long time without any help. This is frequently caused by shame and embarrassment about discussing their symptoms with a practitioner. Sometimes they have tried to get help and they have seen physicians, gynecologists or therapists who do not know how to treat PGAD. Worse yet, sometimes physicians tell patients that this is all in their heads or that such a condition does not exist The psychological stress caused by this condition may be severe. Many women feel depressed agitated and exhausted. Some can not find relief when sleeping. Others report that it is exacerbated by simple things like walking or sitting. So far, its etiology is unknown. Many physicians and therapists who treat it feel that it is caused by pudendal nerve entrapment. I have seen cases where the onset was due to a surgery, medical conditions or new medication. Most women report that prior to treatment they get very short term relief from sexual activity.
Fortunately, there are several things which bring relief; primarily medications, nerve stimulation and physical therapy. Psychotherapy can also be helpful to address the emotional and psychological issues around living with this condition.Like many female sexual dysfunctions minimal financial resources have been allocated for research in this area. Unfortunately, many sexual dysfunctions are considered idiopathic and until more time and money are committed to them they will remain that way.