Like HowStuffWorks on Facebook!

Masters and Johnson


Treating Impotence

Further research and improved medical testing since their claim has shown impotence caused purely by psychological issues to be closer to 40 percent to 50 percent. Masters and Johnson noted that having several experiences of impotence could cause men to withdraw from sexual activity entirely in an attempt to avoid the frustration and embarrassment of being unable to achieve or maintain an erection.

Success Treating Impotence

Inadequate communication and fear related to only talking about sexual issues complicates the problem of male impotence, as well as female orgasmic inadequacy. However, Masters and Johnson reported great success in treating impotence, especially when it had its roots in fear of failure and performance anxiety.

Masters and Johnson also studied and therapeutically addressed the problem of premature ejaculation. They found that the subjects in their studies had internalized a middle class culturally constituted fear of being unable to control the ejaculatory process sufficiently to satisfy their female partners. Working class men, they discovered, were not as concerned with partner satisfaction.

As had Kinsey before them, Masters and Johnson confirmed the near universality of masturbation in their subjects. The sex therapy program developed by Masters and Johnson attempts to help clients by providing appropriate sex information, alleviating anxiety about sexual performance, and facilitating verbal, emotional, and physical communication with sex partners.

Thirty years since their first study was published, the contributions of Masters and Johnson on sexual functioning, sexual problems and therapeutic interventions for these problems remains among the most significant work in these areas.

While some of their work generated considerable skepticism or outright criticism, the duo helped to revamp contemporary thinking about sex, including assisting in moving society toward a more open discussion of sexual practices and experiences.

Sadly, in the early 1990s, Masters and Johnson were divorced and their more than 30-year collaboration in sex research and therapy came to an end.

Copyright 2002 Sinclair Intimacy Institute


More to Explore