Endocrine, psychological and genital response to sexual arousal in men

David L. Rowland, Julia R. Heiman, Brian A. Gladue, John P. Hatch, Charles H. Doering, Stephen J. Weiler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

49 Scopus citations


The endocrine, genital, and cognitive-affective responses of sexually functional men were compared under sexually arousing and non-arousing conditions. Sexually aroused subjects showed significantly higher serum luteinizing hormone concentrations than non-aroused subjects. Testosterone concentration was correlated with higher levels of penile response, but it did not prime further sexual arousal. Cortisol and prolactin concentrations decreased in both groups, more in the non-aroused group, and appeared to both inhibit and facilitate sexual response, depending on the level of anxiety reported by the subjects. Cortisol was correlated with self-reported worry, and testosterone with relaxation. These results support a multidimensional approach to the endocrine study of sexual arousal that includes both cognitive and genital response components.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)149-158
Number of pages10
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1987

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Endocrinology
  • Endocrine and Autonomic Systems
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Biological Psychiatry


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