Is There a Female Viagra?

Men have their little blue pill. But a little pink pill, despite years of research and a bursting demand, remains elusive.
Not from lack of trying. In 1998 Pfizer developed and marketed a pill that reinvigorated sex lives and put passion in aging bedrooms around the world. Ever heard of Viagra? Women did, and the search for a female Viagra started shortly thereafter.
In 2010, German drugmaker Boehringer Ingelheim developed and tested flibanserin, dubbed ‘female Viagra’ by the media, in hope of becoming the first pharmaceutical drug to treat reduced female libido. Flibanserin floundered, despite the hype, in part from safety concerns. Among side effects, test subjects reported nausea, headaches, depression and fatigue.
The FDA also questioned the drug’s potency, or rather, lack of it, and rejected flibanserin in October 2010.
But the quest continues. Pfizer and Procter & Gamble have both entered the market, at various times, since Viagra’s introduction. Pfizer initially tested Viagra on women, with no success. After that, drugmakers tried hormones, including testosterone. Procter & Gamble pitched a testosterone patch, rejected also, by the FDA in 2004.
The incentive for a female Viagra remains. Some estimates put the market for a prescription libido pill at $2 billion. That might be on the low side, as an oft-quoted 1999 survey by the Journal of American Medical Association proclaims 43% of American women have some form of sexual dysfunction.
Numbers fluctuate, but there’s no question that millions of American women suffer from Hypoactive Sexual Desire Disorder, or HSDD. Critics have pondered the definition of reduced female libido for years, and while it’s difficult to measure sex drive, symptoms of HSDD – lack of sexual desire, not attributable to medication or other causes, over a prolonged period and causing distress – there’s plenty of HSDD to go around, given the world’s aging population.
Is there a female Viagra? There’s currently no pharmaceutical solution to boost libido in women. If that’s your definition of a female Viagra, then the answer is no.
But that might not be a bad thing. Because the answer to reduced sex drive in women could already exist.
Female enhancement refers to natural products that boost sexual desire and restore hormone levels to peak sexual function in women. Said products include pills and creams. Female enhancement products use natural ingredients, like damiana leaf, ginkgo biloba and black cohosh root, long prized and used since antiquity to stimulate blood flow to the genitals and waken the sex drive.
Female enhancement products work. But there’s a stigma attached to female enhancement, perhaps owing to their relation to male enhancement, which conjures images of penis extenders and the infamous penis pill.
Is there a female Viagra among the various female enhancement pills that promise to reinvigorate the sex drive? Perhaps. Female enhancement pills restore shifting hormones to peak sexual performance and deliver vital nutrients to the reproductive system. They don’t guarantee a bun in the oven, but they do guarantee lubrication, when you need it, and increased sexual desire and ability to orgasm.
Remember that female enhancement pills and gels serve different functions. Pills generally take three months to deliver best results. But when they do, you’ll know it. Benefits of female enhancement pills include increased lubrication, deep, prolonged, and even multiple orgasms.
Enhancement creams act immediately, with instant lubrication. They don’t address the underlying causes of decreased sex drive in women – shifting hormones and vaginal dryness – but they do provide gratification, when you need it, and are handy to have when you want to get in the mood.
Additionally, new evidence continues to surface about safety of over-the-counter lubricants containing nonoxynol-9, which is now linked to tears in the vaginal walls, increasing risk of HIV and HPV infection. Female enhancement creams, with their use of natural products, forgo such dependance on petrochemicals and may be a safer option.
There is no female Viagra. But there are alternatives, based on ancient knowledge of the female anatomy and the reproductive system. That may be better, and arguably more effective than a drug can provide.

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