Return to Index
Sex After A Heart Attack
Understanding Heart Disease
Resuming Sex After a Heart Attack
- Talk to your partner about your feelings. If you are anxious about having sex again, it is important that your partner knows this. The two of you can work together and decide the right time to resume sexual activity.
- When you do feel ready, slowly ease into having sex again.
- Sex should be stress-free. Pick a time when you and your partner are relaxed. Also, choose a place that is peaceful and free of interruptions.
- Take your medication as prescribed.
- Note: If you are man and take medication for erectile dysfunction, like sildenafil (Viagra), make sure your doctor knows about this. These medications are generally safe if you have a stable heart condition, but they can interact with other drugs, like nitrates.
- If you are a women who has not gone through menopause, make sure you use an effective birth control.
- Watch for cardiac symptoms, like chest pain, clammy skin, nausea, and weakness.
- If you are having sexual problems, such as pain during intercourse in women, discuss this with your doctor. Your sexual health is part of your overall well-being, so it important that you do not ignore these symptoms.
American Heart Association http://www.heart.org
National Institute on Aging http://www.nia.nih.gov
Canadian Cardiovascular Society http://www.ccs.ca
Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada http://www.heartandstroke.ca
Acute coronary syndrome. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed. Updated March 25, 2014. Accessed March 27, 2014.
Heart attack: tips for recovering and staying well. American Academy of Family Physicians Family Doctor website. Available at: http://familydoctor.org/familydoctor/en/diseases-conditions/heart-attack/treatment/tips-for-recovering-and-staying-well.html. Updated March 2014. Accessed March 27, 2014.
Levine GN, Steinke EE, et al. Sexual activity and cardiovascular disease: a scientific statement from the American Heart Association. Circulation 2012;125(8):1058-1072.
Sex and heart disease. American Heart Association website. Available at: http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/Conditions/More/MyHeartandStrokeNews/Sex-and-Heart-Disease%5FUCM%5F436414%5FArticle.jsp. Updated March 2, 2012. Accessed March 27, 2014.
ST-elevation mycardial infarction (STEMI). EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed. Updated March 25, 2014. Accessed March 27, 2014.
8/12/2014 DynaMed's Systematic Literature Surveillance http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed: Steinke EE, Jaarsma T, et al. Sexual counseling for individuals with cardiovascular disease and their partners: a consensus document from the American Heart Association and the ESC Council on Cardiovascular Nursing and Applied Professions (CCNAP). Circulation. 2013 Oct 29;128(18):2075-2096.
- Reviewer: Michael Woods, MD
- Review Date: 04/2014
- Update Date: 08/12/2014