News Tuesday May 25, 2010

Controversy over Viagra for women

There is growing concern about whether the impending 'female Viagra' treatment, which drug firm Boehringer Ingelheim are trying to release, is going to really help women regain their sexual desire.

On June 18th the medication, called Flibanserin, will be officially reviewed by the US Federal Drug Association. Boehringer hopes that if it is approved, it will go on to become as successful as the male erectile dysfunction treatment, Viagra.

Yet health experts are seriously debating whether or not Viagra for women would be a beneficial product. Unlike erectile dysfunction, which involves a tangible, measurable problem (a lack of ability to attain an erection), female sexual dysfunction is not so easy to define and some question whether female sexual dysfunction actually exists at all.

One filmmaker, Liz Canner, was so doubtful about the label that she created a documentary called Orgasm Inc to open up debate about it. The film was released last year and received a lot of interest and acclaim.

A woman can be lacking in sexual desire for all manner of reasons; these might be physical, or they might be to do with her psychological state. The highs and lows of work and relationships may be the main underlying factors behind female sex drive problems. Sometimes a lack of hormones is to blame, in which case hormone replacement therapy can help.

The other side of the argument

Despite all this criticism of female Viagra, surely if there is a pill that can help some women to boost their sex lives, then this is a good thing? While female sexual dysfunction is still a poorly understood condition, perhaps the arrival of female Viagra will help experts to get a better understanding of the ways that women are turned on; and as a result, the ways that they become uninterested in sex.

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