Adult women who survived cancer as a child report having less sex, less interest, less desire and less satisfaction than their sisters who never had cancer, according to a new study.

“These women are functioning really well, by and large, but there’s this sliver of an issue that needs to be looked at more closely,” said lead author Jennifer S. Ford. Women who had been diagnosed as teens, been treated with radiation of the brain or who ceased menstruating at a younger age (or never began) were at the biggest risk for sexual dysfunction.

“One of the most surprising things was to find this impairment many, many years after treatment,” Ford told Reuters Health by phone. “You might expect things would go back to normal, but they did not.”

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