History

Introduction

The field of sexual medicine has been well represented by ISSM and its precursor organizations since the first symposium on corpora cavernosa revascularization in 1978.

The society established its first By-Laws in 2000 and thus a structured society devoted to the science of sexual medicine came into being.

In the years after that it became the central international organization with regional affiliates from around the world and from the dominant sexual scientific society for women.

Through its biennial Meeting and the establishment of its family of journals the science of sexual medicine in women and men has been presented to the world. This work not only includes the professionals involved in basic and clinical work in the field but also for those patients who suffer from sexual dysfunctions.

The emphasis on all of the different disciplines involved in sexual medicine have been a strength of this society. It truly has become the leader in the field of sexual medicine.  

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Click here for a Comprehensive History of the International Society for Sexual Medicine published by Dr. Ronald W. Lewis, in Sexual Medicine Reviews, August, 2021.

The founders of the ISSM

Three men could legitimately be called the founders of the current International Society of Sexual Medicine in 1978.

Headshot Vaclav 500Vaclav Michal, Czechoslovakia (a vascular surgeon, who noted that men he had operated on for lower limb vascular blockage reported an improvement in their erectile function. He subsequently proposed a micro-revascularization directly to the corpora cavernosa.

Headshot Zorgniotti AdrianAdrian Zorgniotti, USA (the chairman of urology at Cabrini Medical Center in New York City. On becoming aware of this work and that of other pioneers’ work on new approaches to impotence, he organized a meeting in New York City at his institution in late September and early October of 1978. Adrian continued to be one of the organizers for the society's early Meeting and was a consummate clinician in the practice of diagnosing and treating erectile dysfunction.

Headshot Wagner 500Gorm Wagner, Denmark (an excellent researcher in this field, including female sexual function and psychological aspects of sexual disorders.)

Informed of his work in the field of sexual medicine, Adrian invited Gorm to join as a participant at the 1978 meeting. That pairing, of the organizer and the scientist, resulted in the 2 of them being responsible for several ensuing biennial Meeting.

History of ISSM over the years

1978

1978

In New York, USA, the First Annual Meeting under the name of International Conferences on Corpus Cavernosum Revascularization was organized by the founders Vaclav Michal (Czechoslovakia), Adrian Zorgniotti (U.S.A.) and Gorm Wagner (Denmark). Major hosts: Adrian Zorgniotti and Giuseppe Rossi.1st meeting 1978

 

Jean François Ginestié, MD, from Montpellier (France), had published a book called “Radiological Exploration of Impotence” with A. Romieu, MD, as coauthor. In this book, they described a series of arteriograms of penile vasculature that met the standards of modern arteriography. In a time when collimators were not available, they used sandbags to produce excellent and accurate images of the arterial supply of the penis. (Jean François Ginestié, MD suddenly died in January 1979).

Michal mentioned that Ginestié was the first to carry out a selective arteriography of the arterial bed supplying the cavernous bodies and to show some forms of narrowing and occlusion of these arteries. His most valuable contribution in this particular area is the detection and correct interpretations of malformations and dysplasia of the arteries of the penis, which explains some cases of primary impotence.

Radiologic exploration of impotence Ginestié

1978

1980

1980

In Monte Carlo, Monaco, the Second International Symposium on Corpus Cavernosum Revascularization was organized. Major hosts: Adrian Zorgniotti and Gorm Wagner

Karacan and Virag 1980

Ismet Karacan (left), one of 2 special guests at the second meeting in 1980 in Monaco- expert in nocturnal erections associated with REM sleep from Houston, and Ronald Virag, vascular surgeon from Paris, host of fourth biennial meeting and developer of penis revascularization procedure. (Dr. Karacan died in 2009.)

1982

1982

In Copenhagen, Denmark, the Third International Symposium on Corpus Cavernosum Revascularization took place. Major host: Gorm Wagner

At this meeting, the group decided on a name for the organization, the International Society for Impotence Research (ISIR), and the idea of an international biennial forum was solidified for the field.

ISIR logo

1982

1984

1984

First booklet Annual Meeting Paris 1984In Paris, France, the First World Meeting on Impotence Research took place. Major host: Ronald Virag

The meeting in Paris was the first meeting under the new name and included a program booklet, called proceedings of the First World Meeting on Impotence was issued including 12 chapters with 69 articles on the following subjects: epidemiology and risk factors; physiology and histology; psychoneuroendocrinology; nocturnal penile tumescence and measurement of penile rigidity; evaluation of vasculogenic impotence; venous impotence; intracavernous injection of vasoactive drugs; diabetes and impotence; Peyronie's disease and penile curvature; impotence and vascular surgery; surgical treatment of impotence; and miscellaneous.

1984

1984

The ISIR (ISSM) decided in 1984 that it should recognize cutting‐edge research with awards at the biennial meetings. The “Jean François Ginestié Prize” first awarded in 1984, of 15.000 French francs (± US$ 2,500), was funded by the family of this French pioneer in the field of ED (he did the first arteriographies of the pudendal arteries). This prize awarded the best paper on basic science.  The Fund was terminated in 2014.

Herbert Newman

Herbert Newman- winner of the first Ginestie Prize in Paris, 1984, whose wife sponsored a new award for the best clinical paper presented at the biennial meeting, the award changed to Zorgniotti/Newman Prize after the former's death.

1984

1986

1986

In Prague, Czechoslovakia, The Fifth Symposium on Corpus Cavernosum Revascularization and The Second World Meeting on Impotence took place. Major host: Vaclav Michal

Penile injection therapy for ED was highlighted at both the Paris (1984) and Prague (1986) meetings. At the 1984 meeting, there were only five presentations dealing with intracavernosal pharmacological injection for diagnosis and treatment of impotence, but in the subsequent 1986 and 1988 meetings there were over 45 presentations of the same subject.

1988

1988

In Boston, USA, the World Meeting on Impotence Research took place. 
Major hosts: Robert Krane and Irwin Goldstein

Irwin Goldstein with Gorm Wagner and Adrian Zorgniotti at 1988 biennial meeting in Boston hosted by Drs. Krane and Goldstein

Irwin Goldstein with Gorm Wagner and Adrian Zorgniotti at 1988 biennial meeting in Boston hosted by Drs. Krane and Goldstein.


For the first time during this meeting a proceedings booklet was prepared for the meeting which contained all the abstracts presented.
At this meeting Dr. Newman's widow donated money for a Herbert F. Newman Prize to be presented for an outstanding original work on any investigational project presented at the meeting concerning erectile dysfunction.

1988

1988

1988

The “Zorgniotti‐Newman Prize” first awarded in 1988 of US$ 1,000, is funded with the “Zorgniotti Research Fund,” itself funded by voluntary donations of the ISSM members, as well as by a donation of the Dutch organizers of the 8th Biennial ISIR Meeting from the profits of this Congress. It honors two other famous pioneers in the field of ED, both founders of the ISIR, and awards the best clinical paper.

1989

1989

Just 11 years from the first meeting in New York City, a journal was started, with the first editors being Dr. Gorm Wagner from Copenhagen, Denmark, and Bill Furlow from Nashville, Tennessee, USA. They served as coeditors in chief from 1989 to 1992. The journal was entitled The International Journal of Impotence Research (IJIR), with a subtitle of “Basic and Clinical Studies,” and was published and owned by Smith‐Gordon & Co., Ltd, of London. This began as a four‐times‐per‐year publication.

William Furlow, one of 2 special guests at the second meeting in Monaco meeting in 1980 and one of the first co-editor-in-chiefs of our journal, International Journal of Impotence Research.William Furlow, one of 2 special guests at the second meeting in Monaco meeting in 1980 and one of the first co-editor-in-chiefs of our journal, International Journal of Impotence Research.

1989

1990

1990

Rio de Janeiro, World Meeting on Impotence Research
Major hosts: Pedro Puech-Leao and Sydney Glina

1990 RIO WMSM

1990

1990

The “Poster Prize” first awarded in 1990 of US$1,000, awards the best poster.

1990

1992

1992

Milan, World Meeting on Impotence Research
Major host: Eduardo Austoni

The name of the association ISIR, was formally adopted in the bylaws during the World Meeting on Impotence Research.

On the first day of this biennial meeting in Milano, on September 14, 1991 bylaws were presented and adopted by the members of the society, which now formally was registered as the ISIR with 3 categories of memberships: Active, Honorary and Senior memberships. This was also the start of an Executive Committee consisting of a President, for a 2-year term who could be re-elected to after 2 years; the past presidents of the society as ex officio members; a Secretary/Treasurer, for a term of 4 years and then eligible for nomination for President; and 4 executive committee members, elected for 4-year terms.

1992

1992

In 1992, Bill Furlow resigned as coeditor in chief of IJIR and was replaced by Dr. Arnold Melman, who was to serve along with Dr. Wagner until 2002, leaving the journal with an impact factor of 2.7.

1992

1994

1994

Singapore World Meeting on Impotence Research
Major host: Ganesan Adaiken

Dr. Ganesan Adaikan, developed a plan for sharing of profits from this meeting with the ISIR.

Dr. Robert Krane from Boston, Massachusetts, USA, was elected president at the 1994 meeting in Singapore. He worked to develop the ISIR as a parent organization for the developing regional organization (ESSIR/ESSM = founded 1995, SSI/SSR/SMSNA = founded 1994, SLAI/SLAMS = founded 1990, APPIR/APSSM = founded 1987, ASIR/ASSM = founded 1997). 

1995

1995

In 1995, the IJIR was purchased from Smith‐Gordon & Co. by Stockton‐Press. Stockton‐Press was merged with Nature Publication Group in 2000, and thus came into ownership by this publisher.

1995

1996

1996

San Francisco, World Meeting on Impotence Research
Major host: Tom Lue

It was decided to allocate a portion of the profits from the meeting for the specific purpose of sponsoring a new award—the Tanagho Prize.

1998

1998

In Amsterdam, the Netherlands, the World Meeting on Impotence Research took place.
Major host: Eric Meuleman

1998 Meuleman

Eric Meuleman (Host of 1998 biennial meeting in Amsterdam and first standalone Treasurer of the Society- 2000–2006) and Robert Krane (President of the society 1994-1998) and one of the hosts of the biennial meeting in 1998 held in Boston. During Dr. Krane's tenure the establishment of regional sexual medicine organizations affiliated with the ISIR. Dr. Krane passed away on November 17, 2001.

The Dutch group after the 1998 meeting made a donation of $75,000 to the Adrian Zorgniotti Research Fund of the International Society of Impotence Research.

Status Plus became the official business office of the society.

1998

1998

1998

In August 1998, Jacques Buvat, as editor, presented the first issue of the News Bulletin of the ISIR. This would serve more as a news‐type communication of the happenings and events and meetings of the parent ISSIR as well as affiliates. Information was provided by officers of the affiliated organization, and many summaries of meetings regarding sexual medicine made up the content of this publication.

1998

1998

The “Tanagho Prize” first awarded in 1998 of US$ 1,000, is funded with the “Tanagho Fund,” made up of the benefits of the San Francisco ISIR Meeting (1996). It awards the best innovative research.

1998

1999

1999

The 1st International Consultation on Erectile Dysfunction was organized by Dr. Saad Khoury and occurred in Paris, France, in July 1999. This was co-sponsored by three organizations: the World Health Organization (WHO), the International Society for Impotence Research (ISSIR), and the Societe' Internationale de Urologie (SIU).

The mission of this meeting was to develop recommendations for the diagnostic evaluation and management of ED. 

A book was published after this first international consultation.ICED 1999 Paris

2000

2000

In 2000, Dr. Sidney Glina, as president of the ISSIR, established a website committee. Jacques Buvat was named chairman of this committee, and in issue 7 of the News Bulletin, the website administrator, Alexander Gilbert, presented the new design of the website.

In September 2000, Dr. Buvat with Dr. Christian Fossat launched the ISIR list (at present the ISSM Discussion Forum). 

2000

2000

2000

Perth, World Meeting on Impotence Research
Major hosts: Carolyn Earle and Bronwyn Stuckey

The name of the organization was changed to the International Society for Sexual and Impotence Research (ISSIR), a bridging name between the old and the new final name.

The first session on female sexual dysfunction was made part of the scientific program.

2002

2002

Montreal, World Conference of the International Society for Sexual and Impotence Research
Major host: Jeremy Heaton

The biennial meeting became known as the World Conference of the International Society for Sexual and Impotence Research and later the International Society for Sexual Medicine (ISSM)

2002

2002

2002

A Female Sexual Dysfunction prize was announced for the 2002 Biennial Meeting in Montreal, Canada.

2003

2003

In 2003, Irwin Goldstein assumed the office of editor in chief of the IJIR after the newly appointed publication committee headed by John Pryor of London.

In 2003, it was decided by the leadership of the ISSIR that the journal would be better suited for ownership by the society. An attempt was made to inquire about the sale of the current IJIR to the ISSIR, but Nature Publication Group was not interested in this offer.

2003

2004

2004

The 2nd International Consultation on Sexual Dysfunction was held in Paris in 2004. 
This addressed sexual medicine and sexual dysfunction in men and women. The editors of the published book included prominent members of the ISSM: Tom Lue, Ray Rosen, Francois Giulanio, and Francois Montorsi.
This meeting was cosponsored by the International Consultation on Urological Diseases, the International Society of Urology, and the ISSIR.

2004

2004

In March of 2004, the publication committee and the ISSIR board met in Amsterdam with three potential publishing partners: Taylor and Francis, Elsevier, and Blackwell. The ISSIR then entered into a contract with Blackwell Publishing House to publish a new journal to be the Journal of Sexual Medicine. ISSIR would retain ownership of this journal, and Blackwell would be the publishing partner. The entire editorial team of the IJIR moved to the new journal, and this became the official journal of the ISSIR, and subsequently ISSM and all of the five regional affiliates (APSIR, ASSIR, ESSM, SLAIS, SMSNA).

First EB meeting JSM 2004

In addition, in 2006, the journal became the official journal of the International Society for the Study of Women's Sexual Health.

2004

2004

2004

Buenos Aires, World Conference of the ISSM
Major Host: Edgardo Becher 

It was decided that our own business office Status Plus would be more efficient to run future meetings, and the first of such was held in Buenos Aries, run by Status Plus and hosted by Eduardo Becher in 2004. At this meeting, the official name of the society was changed to the International Society for Sexual Medicine.

A similar change had occurred prior to this by two of our affiliated organizations, the European Society for Sexual Medicine (ESSM) and The Sexual Medicine Society of North America (SMSNA).

2005

2005

The African Society for Sexual and Impotence Research changed its name to the Africa Gulf Society for Sexual Medicine (AGSSM).

2005

2006

2006

In Cairo, Egypt, the World Conference of the ISSM was organized. Major Host: Khaled Dabees

During Jacques Buvat's term as president of the ISSM (2000-2002), he had the vision to create a standards committee. The committee, under the leadership of Dr. Harmut Porst, Germany and the co-chairman of the standards committee, Jacques Buvat, took on a Herculean task of developing a book as a report product of this committee's effort to update current knowledge and present standards in the field of sexual medicine for both genders. This 28‐chapter volume was published in 2006 and represents “a focused consonance between clinical problems and contemporary scientific literature”.

Standard Practice in Sexual Medicine

2007

2007

The impact factor for The Journal of Sexual Medicine in 2007 was 6.199, making JSM the second most highly ranked journal of the 55 journals in the urology/nephrology group (behind only the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology). It was the first ranked journal among all journals in urology and sexual medicine.

2007

2007

2007

Under the leadership and presidency of Ira Sharlip, a meeting of 21 of the world's top experts in premature ejaculation (PE) was convened in October of 2007 in Amsterdam for the purpose of developing a contemporary evidence‐based definition of PE.

2008

2008

Brussels - Joint Conference with ESSM

It was decided that the biennial meetings would be joint meetings with regional affiliated societies.

2008

2008

2008

Through the leadership of Dr. Goldstein, The Journal of Sexual Medicine rapidly became the most dominant journal in sexual medicine. It became a monthly journal in 2008.

2009

2009

The 3rd International Consultation on Sexual Medicine was held in Paris, France, in July 2009.

A book was not printed from this meeting but was available online. The editors of that online publication were Francesco Montorsi, R. Basson, G. Adiakan, E. Becher, A. Clayton, F. Guiliano, S. Curry, and I. Sharlip. Evidence‐based data analysis was stressed at this third meeting.

2009

2010

2010

Seoul - World Conference of the ISSM
Major host: Je Jong Kim, Chairman Organizing Committee

A very difficult decision of ending affiliation with the AGSSM was made under the presidency of John Dean. With help from the ISSM, a new society, Middle East Society for Sexual Medicine, was founded, with Amr El‐Meliegy as its first president in August 2010.

2011

2011

The last printed issue of the ISSM News Bulletin was issue 33, published in January 2011.

2011

2011

2011

In summer of 2011, the ISSM and the SMSNA cohosted a program in Washington, DC, USA, entitled “Cancer Survivorship in Sexual Health Symposium.” The cochairmen of this meeting were Luca Incrocci and Gregory A. Broderick. 

Frontpage announcement

2012

2012

In 2012, the ESSM and ISSM collaborated as equal partners in support of the 6th School of Sexual Medicine, which are held in Oxford, England, for 2 weeks each year. The ISSM also provided 10 scholarships to support attendance at the school of sexual medicine.

2012

2012

2012

Chicago - Joint Conference with SMSNA

2012

2012

It was decided in 2012 and 2013 that it may very well be time to spin off the very large Journal of Sexual Medicine into a three publication format to be owned by the ISSM. It was decided in 2012 that a second journal publication would be the Sexual Medicine Reviews with Culley Carson from North Carolina, USA, being selected as the first editor. This journal will be a journal that invites state‐of‐the‐art reviews in the field of sexual medicine.
The third journal will be an online‐only journal with virtual issues being periodically placed together as virtual issues online. The editor of this journal will be Dr. Alan Shindel from Davis, California, USA. The new journal is to be called Sexual Medicine. These two spin‐off publications will publish their first papers in 2013.

2012

2013

2013

An international symposium on prostate, androgens, and men's sexual health took place in July 2013 in Berlin, Germany, jointly shared by ISSM and ESSM.

Announcement Berlin 2013

2014

2014

Sao Paulo Joint Conference with SLAMS

2014

2016

2016

Beijing Joint Conference with APSSM

2018

2018

Lisbon Joint Conference with ESSM

2018

2020

2020

Yokohama Japan-Postponed to a virtual meeting in 2021 because of pandemic

2021

2021

It was decided to establish the ISSM Mental Health Prize for the best paper on psychology/behavioral health. This prize will be awarded at the virtual meeting on Sexual Medicine in 2021. 

2021

Officers of the ISSM Executive Committee who have served in the ISSM

1984-1986

headshot Vaclav

President
Vaclav Michal

1986-1988

headshot Wagner

President
Adrian Zorgniotti
 

1988-1994

headshot Wagner

President
Gorm Wagner

1994-1998

headshot Krane

President
Robert Krane

1998-2000

headshot Lewis_Ronald

President
Ronald W. Lewis

headshot Glina

President Elect
Sydney Glina

headshot Krane

Past President
Robert Krane

2000-2002

headshot Glina

President
Sydney Glina

headshot Buvat

President Elect
Jacques Buvat

headshot Lewis_Ronald

Past President
Ronald W. Lewis

2002-2004

headshot Buvat

President
Jacques Buvat

headshot Ganesan_Adaikan

President Elect
P. Ganesan Adaikan

headshot Glina

Past President
Sydney Glina

2004-2006

headshot Ganesan_Adaikan

President
P. Ganesan Adaikan

headshot Sharlip

President Elect
Ira Sharlip

headshot Buvat

Past President
Jacques Buvat

headshot Becher_Edgardo

Secretary General
Edgardo Becher

headshot person

Treasurer
Eric Meuleman

2006-2008

headshot Sharlip

President
Ira Sharlip

headshot Dean

President Elect
John Dean

headshot Ganesan_Adaikan

Past President
P. Ganesan Adaikan

headshot Becher_Edgardo

Secretary General
Edgardo Becher

headshot Incrocci_Luca

Treasurer
Luca Incrocci

2008-2010

headshot Dean

President
John Dean

headshot Becher_Edgardo

President Elect
Edgardo Becher

headshot Sharlip

Past President
Ira Sharlip

headshot Hellstrom

Secretary General
Wayne Hellstrom

headshot Incrocci_Luca

Treasurer
Luca Incrocci

2010-2012

headshot Becher_Edgardo

President
Edgardo Becher

headshot McMahon

President Elect
Chris McMahon

headshot Dean

Past President
John Dean

headshot Hellstrom

Secretary General
Wayne Hellstrom

headshot Incrocci_Luca

Treasurer
Luca Incrocci

2012-2014

headshot McMahon

President
Chris McMahon

headshot Hellstrom

President Elect
Wayne Hellstrom

headshot Becher_Edgardo

Past President
Edgardo Becher

headshot Torres_Luiz_Otavio

Secretary General
Luiz Otavio Torres

headshot Incrocci_Luca

Treasurer
Luca Incrocci

2014-2016

headshot Hellstrom

President
Wayne Hellstrom

headshot Incrocci_Luca

President Elect
Luca Incrocci

headshot McMahon

Past President
Chris McMahon

headshot Torres_Luiz_Otavio

Secretary General
Luiz Otavio Torres

headshot giraldi

Treasurer
Annamaria Giraldi

2016-2018

headshot Incrocci_Luca

President
Luca Incrocci

headshot Torres_Luiz_Otavio

President Elect
Luiz Otavio Torres

headshot Hellstrom

Past President
Wayne Hellstrom

headshot brock

Secretary General
Gerald Brock

headshot giraldi

Treasurer
Annamaria Giraldi

2018-2020

headshot Torres_Luiz_Otavio

President
Luiz Otavio Torres

headshot giraldi

President Elect
Annamaria Giraldi

headshot Incrocci_Luca

Past President
Luca Incrocci

headshot brock

Secretary General
Gerald Brock

headshot burnett

Treasurer
Arthur Burnett

2020-2022

headshot giraldi

President
Annamaria Giraldi

headshot brock

President Elect
Gerald Brock

headshot Torres_Luiz_Otavio

Past President
Luiz Otavio Torres

headshot park

Secretary General
Kwangsung Park

headshot burnett

Treasurer
Arthur Burnett

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