In retrospect, technological advancement has been one of the factors underpinning the expansion of the medical field. Over the years, new technological inventions have led to the introduction of new medical perspectives ranging from diagnosis, treatment and prevention of different health conditions and disorders. In the field of mental health, technological advancement seems to have augmented psychological treatment interventions, as well as the assessment of various aspects of different mental disorders. According to Ritterband et al. (2003), the evolution of web-based intervention platforms holds the potential for enhancing treatment for conditions in which patients show little interest seeking for treatment. In this context, it is worth noting that most interventions for mental disorders focus on behavioral modifications which, in turn plays an integral role in improving the underlying symptoms. On the other hand, health-related information websites have been found to be useful to patients. This has been evidenced by Pew Research Center (2002), in which surveys show that people’s knowledge on different health condition has been improved through internet education. Therefore, this essay proposes hypoactive sexual desire disorder (HSDD) as the psychological issue that can be addressed through web-based interventions.
HSDD is one of the sexual dysfunction disorders which need extensive focus. In the past, this disorder has not received substantial attention from healthcare professionals. Evidence shows that most healthcare providers, especially physicians are not interested in sharing sexual information regarding HSDD with their patients (Kimuyu, 2018). On the other hand, most patients are not open to seek treatment for sexual dysfunction. Despite these barriers to the treatment of HSDD, the impact of this disorder exhibits clinical significance. Evidence indicates that the prevalence of HSDD among men in the United States ranges from 13% to 28%, whereas the prevalence among women ranges from 26% to 43% (Gingell et al., 2005). This phenomenon has been reaffirmed by Clayton (2010) who reports the prevalence of HSDD to be 1 in every 10 women in the US and similar epidemiological trends have been observed in the UK population. Therefore, internet intervention will be of great significance in addressing the challenges faced by patients to access treatment from physicians. Additionally, a web-based intervention will provide an extended physicians opportunity to reach out to patients who are unable to obtain interventions from the traditional healthcare facilities. In this case, a web-based treatment intervention (WBTI) will be ideal for addressing the key issues related to HSDD. The rationale for this proposal is based on the fact that hand-held computer devices are now flooding the market; thus lifting the challenge of band-width. Second, this intervention can be tailored to meet the needs of the patients through web-based applications. As such, this approach will address the issue of compliance which hinders the achievement of the desired intervention outcomes.
Overall, the proposed intervention should comprise of several elements. First, it should be designed in a manner that enhances the diagnosis of HSDD. This implies that the intervention should be designed to incorporate the DSM-5 criteria which are recommended for the diagnosis of the disorder. Such an intervention should guide patients to identify the hallmark presentation features of HSDD. For instance, it should be able to reflect the features which are required for HSDD diagnosis including the absence of arousal without stimulation, exclusion of another Axis I disorder, presence of distress and failure to show genital changes, especially during sexual activity (American Psychological Association, 2013a). Second, the intervention should be designed to enable physicians to identify co-morbidity. The rationale for this is based on the fact that most sexual dysfunctions, such as erectile dysfunction, dyspareunia and Vaginismus, co-occur with HSDD. Finally, the proposed internet intervention for HSDD should be designed to facilitate the core treatment approaches including psychotherapy and pharmacotherapy. Of great focus is psychotherapy, primarily sex therapy which engages psychoanalytic strategies to improve intervention outcomes. It is reported that psychoanalytic strategies potentiates sex therapy through enhancing communication between sexual partners which, in turn, improves sexual response cycle. In addition, these behavioral approaches have been found to be helpful in reducing distress among patients experiencing low sexual desire (Sadock & Sadock, 2003).