The effects of amphetamine on sexuality – specifically in males – have attracted wide attention among clinicians and researchers for years. However, at present, the link between amphetamines and sexuality remained complex despite the emergence of studies that yielded varying opinions.
As noted in Leslie Iversen’s Speed, Ecstasy, Ritalin: The Science of Amphetamines, amphetamine side effects depend on dosage, personality, previous sexual experience, degree of normality of pre-drug sexual adjustment, and setting. While some reported amphetamine users experienced decreased sexual drive, other amphetamine dependents have described an increased sexual libido and intense orgasm.
Ernest L. Abel’s Psychoactive Drugs and Sex provided more reports about the varying findings of amphetamine and sexuality. One case study by Connell reported that 7 out of the 17 amphetamine users he studied reported an increase in libido following amphetamine use.
In Bell and Trethowan study, 5 of the 14 amphetamine-users included in their sample reportedly experienced increased sexuality, whereas, 3 experienced a decreased sexuality and 5 did not experience any changes at all. Unfortunately, there was not enough information available for the remaining patient in this study to fully conclude that amphetamine triggers sexual libido.
Another study that was conducted was by Shiorring, wherein 50 Scandinavian amphetamine-users who were in rehab treatment had been interviewed to identify the link between amphetamine and their sexual experience. Eighty-five percent claimed that they experienced strong sexual stimulation after taking amphetamines.
There are also some noteworthy findings that reveal a low dose of amphetamine increases a male’s sexual libido and that a high dose and frequent use of amphetamine can trigger several sexual dysfunctions such as delayed ejaculation, decreased sexual drive, prolonged erection, and multiple orgasms.
As cited by Leslie Iversen in Speed, Ecstasy, Ritalin: The Science of Amphetamines, the large number of researchers, surveys and studies find an association between chronic and heavy amphetamine use and increased sexual activity. However, none of these studies has so far resolved the issue of whether amphetamine use causes such behavior. In contrast, some heavy amphetamine users tend to experience a reduced desire for sexual contacts and may even become impotent.