The United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has just voted to back Flibanserin. The experimental drug is being called the pink pill or “female Viagra.” It has been designed to mirror the experience of Viagra for men by increasing a woman’s sexual desire. The question being raised by some medical experts is “Are the side effects worth the orgasm?”
Viagra helps men get and keep an erection by directing blood flow to that area of the body, while flibanserin is designed to enhance a woman’s psychological desire for sex. In order for this to occur the female would take the drug daily and, over time, it can affect the levels of certain chemicals in the brain. The drug aims to wake up the parts of the brain that are not responding in the desired fashion.
Flibanserin has been through many trials and the benefits are still quite controversial. Just as any other drug, the side effects are a concern for many. These side effects, which reportedly were low to moderate, include fainting, insomnia, anxiety, dizziness, dry mouth, drowsiness, and nausea. While some feel these are not strong enough to block the drug’s approval, others believe there could be unforeseen problems which have not yet been accounted for. Hence, the question, “Are the side effects worth the prescribed orgasm?”
The drug was rejected by the FDA twice before its recent approval due to questions about its safety and the lack of evidence that flibanserin was effective for women with low sex drives. While an estimated one-third of adult women suffer from hypoactive sexual desire disorder (HSDD), for other women reaching an orgasm or desiring sex is more of an emotional experience than physical. Flibanserin’s target market is for pre-menopausal women who have lost their desire for sexual intimacy.
According to Dr. Rosemary Basson, University of British Columbia psychiatrist, many women are not aware when increased blood flows to the genitals indicating physical arousal. Female sexuality is a bit more complex while most men are more easily aroused because, for them, it is more directly linked to desire. Basson added:
In fact, one of the main differences between male and female sexuality is that guys do not need to feel emotionally connected to the person they are having sex with in order to want to have sex. There is actually scientific research to support the observation that women are more likely to feel a sexual desire towards those men for whom they feel an emotional connection.
The simple explanation of the difference between the male and female species is men are more physical while women tend to be more relational. In the same vein, when Dr. Ian Kerner was asked how emotions are related to a woman’s sexual arousal, he responded:
Generally, before a woman can get aroused, she has to experience desire. In this way, female sexuality is different from male sexuality. For most men, all it takes is a little visual stimulation to get us in the mood for sex. That is why men are the predominant consumers of porn and why something like Viagra works so well for men, but not for women.
Unlike the lack of an emotional connection, HSDD is a well-known disorder. Studies show that nearly 10 to 20 percent of adult women face this problem. Medical researchers are constantly working on ways to improve this unfortunate issue many women contend with. Although a panel of advisory doctors voted in favor of flibanserin, several others have noted the drug should not be referred to as “female Viagra” because its function is fundamentally different. Men use Viagra for a medical erectile dysfunction while women would use the drug for increased desire.
Unlike the concern for side effects which arise from flibanserin, there are three products already on the market which have been identified as enhancements for women who suffer from this issue. The first and most highly recommended by women is Her Solutions Gel, which reportedly is clinically proven and doctor recommended. It boasts of being a real solution to increase libido in minutes. Another is Vigorelle, which also claims to be doctor recommended and brags of being an excellent product for increasing and restoring female sexual desire and arousal.
The third product which is unlike the other two is Provestra. This is a pill that women take which claims to dramatically increasing a woman’s desire for sex. Provestra has testimonies which state the drug has helped a host of women in ways other aphrodisiacs cannot such as increased lubrication, better orgasms, increased desire, and is doctor recommended.
For women who are experiencing a diminished libido and have anxiously awaited their own version of Viagra, the dream may soon become a reality. The FDA recently voted 18-6 in favor of approving flibanserin, as long as its manufacturer makes a plan to limit its safety risks. While many are ready to celebrate, others are wondering if the side effects are worth the prescribed orgasm.
By Cherese Jackson (Virginia)
Healthy Women: Flibanserin Studies Continue: Will It Ever Become the Female Viagra?
Forbes: More Complicated Than ‘Pink Viagra’: What You Should Know About Flibanserin (Addyi)
Flibanserin-Hsdd: Flibanserin, a Medical Treatment for Female Hypoactive Sexual Desire Disorder
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