Effect of Alcea on sexual function in postmenopausal women: a randomized, controlled clinical trial

Document Type : Original Article


1 PhD student of Persian Medicine, Department of Persian Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, Golestan University of Medical Sciences, Gorgan, Iran.

2 Assistant professor, Department of Persian Medicine, Clinical Research Development Unit, Faculty of Medicine, Golestan University of Medical Sciences, Gorgan, Iran.

3 Assistant professor, Department of Persian Pharmacy, School of Persian and Complementary Medicine, Mashhad University of Medical Sciences, Mashhad, Iran.

4 Professor, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Faculty of Medicine, Mashhad University of Medical Sciences, Mashhad, Iran

5 Associate professor, Department of Biostatistics, School of Health, Golestan University of Medical Sciences, Gorgan, Iran.

6 PhD of Persian Medicine, School of Persian and Complementary Medicine, Mashhad University of Medical Sciences, Mashhad, Iran.


Introduction: One of the complaints of menopausal period is sexual problems and dyspareunia. According to Persian Medicine, Alcea has a moisturizing and softening effect. This study was performed with aim to determine the effect of Alcea herbal product on sexual function in postmenopausal women.
Methods: This double-blind clinical trial was performed in 2019 on 60 postmenopausal women with sexual dysfunction referred to Omolbanin Hospital in Mashhad. The subjects were randomly divided into two groups of treatment and placebo (n=30 in each group). Alcea vaginal suppository 5% or placebo was administered every night for 2 weeks and then every other night for 6 weeks. The FSFI (Female Sexual Function Index) questionnaire was completed at the beginning and end of the intervention. Data were analyzed by SPSS software (version 18) and Independent T-test, Man Whitney, Chi-square and Wilcoxon. P<0.05 was considered statistically significant.
Results: Mean score of all domains of sexual function increased after 8 weeks of intervention in the treatment group, which was significantly higher than placebo group. The mean total score of the questionnaire before the intervention in the treatment group reached from 17.45±5.25 to 26.21±4.01 (P=0.0001) and in the placebo group from 21.93±5.65 to 23.89±5.06 (P =0.001).
Conclusion: Alcea herbal product has a beneficial effect on sexual function in postmenopausal women, so it can be suggested as an alternative treatment.


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