The current clinical definition of female orgasmic disorder includes:
- Persistent or recurrent delay in, or absence of, orgasm following a normal sexual excitement phase.
- The condition causes the woman significant distress or interpersonal difficulties
- The condition cannot be explained by a larger disorder, the effects of medication, or another health condition.
More recently experts in the field of women’s sexual health have argued that the definition of female orgasmic disorder should be changed to the following:
Despite the self-report of high sexual arousal/excitement, there is either lack of orgasm, markedly diminished intensity of orgasmic sensations or marked delay of orgasm from any kind of stimulation.
This change acknowledges that women require a level of stimulation, arousal, and excitement, and in its absence not having an orgasm may not be surprising.
There are a wide range of statistics about how common female sexual dysfunction is and specifically female orgasmic disorder. Unfortunately most of the figures are marred by unclear questions. Often women are asked about how frequently they have orgasms without being asked about their level of satisfaction with their orgasms and orgasm frequency.
Because orgasm is more than just a physiological event or reflex, it is nearly impossible to know how many women are not experiencing orgasms as a result of lack of stimulation and/or other psychological factors, and not from some physiological dysfunction or disease.
- American Psychiatric Association. Diagnostic and Statistical Manual - Text Revision (DSM-IV-TR™, 2000) Washington, DC: American Psychiatric Association. Accessed January 1, 2007.
- Basson, R., Althof, S., Davis, S., et al. “Summary of the Recommendations on Sexual Dysfunctions in Women. Journal of Sexual Medicine Volume 1, Number 1 (2004):24-34