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Definition of Sexual sadism

Sexual sadism: Individuals with sexual sadism disorder have persistent fantasies in which sexual excitement results from inflicting psychological or physical suffering (including humiliation and terror) on a sexual partner. This disorder is different from minor acts of aggression in normal sexual activity; for example, rough sex. In some cases, sexual sadists are able to find willing partners to participate in the sadistic activities.

At its most extreme, sexual sadism involves illegal activities such as rape, torture, and even murder, in which case the death of the victim produces sexual excitement. It should be noted that while rape may be an expression of sexual sadism, the infliction of suffering is not the motive for most rapists, and the victim's pain generally does not increase the rapist's sexual excitement. Rather, rape involves a combination of sex and gaining power over the victim. These individuals need intensive psychiatric treatment and may be jailed for these activities.

Source: MedTerms™ Medical Dictionary
http://www.medterms.com/script/main/art.asp?articlekey=46417
Last Editorial Review: 6/14/2012

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