New drug to improve female libido has big promises - does it deliver?

September 21, 2015
Volume 12    |   Issue 113

Ok, let's see if you think there's a problem with this. A drug company comes up with a drug and submits the data on the drug to the FDA. It reviews the data and refuses to approve the drug because it doesn't work very well and has too many side effects. So the drug company resubmits it a second time. Same results. So far so good.

But then the drug company resubmits the drug a third time. Only this time it has a different plan. The data is the same. Nothing new there. But what's different is that this time they spend a lot more money on a heavy lobbying campaign for the drug accusing the FDA of sexism if they don't approve the drug. So what's the result of this new politically correct approach? The FDA caves and approves the drug. Nice to hear the gang is looking out for us. But the story gets even better.

The drug is called flibanserin. And the company plans to market it with the trade name Addyi. And what's this important drug supposed to do? Hang on to your hats ladies. The drug is supposed to make you want to have sex more often. So exactly how well does this drug work? According to the FDA's analysis of the data only 8-13% of women who take the drug will experience any improvement at all in their sex life. And overall, women taking the pill will find that they have a whopping one more "sexually satisfying event" every two months. Whoopee! But there's a problem with all this heavy lovemaking.

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Unlike Viagra, which actually remedies something, Addyi is a drug that alters brain chemistry and is meant to be taken every day. The side effects of taking this mind-altering drug are significant. Studies have shown that about one in five women who take the drug will suffer a serious side effect. And that's not all. By FDA order, the drug's label will carry a bold warning that combining the drug with alcohol or certain drugs like birth control pills and drugs used to treat yeast infections can cause dangerously low blood pressure and a loss of consciousness.

Dr. Adriane Fugh-Berman of Georgetown University, studied the drug's marketing campaign. She called Addyi "a mediocre aphrodisiac with scary side effects." And like the rest of us, she's a bit concerned about how the drug got approved. According to her, "This company already has a history of unethical marketing. If approved, I think this drug will be widely prescribed, and we would see an epidemic of adverse effects." Furthermore, she says, "This may set a precedent of risky drugs being approved based on public relations campaigns rather than science." Here's my problem with a drug like this.

Big Pharma wants to make everything a disorder these days so that they can come up with a pill to cure the disorder. News flash. If a woman or a man doesn't want to have sex, that's not a disorder. That's because sexual desire, in general — and particularly female sexual desire — is very complicated. Sex is a multi-factorial thing and is determined by psychological issues, stress, relationships, overall health, energy levels, toxicity, and hormonal balance. Taking this drug will only make women sick while sweeping the real causes under the rug.

Yours for better health,


FDA approval of female libido pill could cause women to suffer "epidemic of adverse effects" by David Gutierrez, staff writer Originally published September 4 2015.

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