Comments

1
Was there another slog format tweak or redesign? Something seems different, larger fonts maybe? Still need to allow for more posts to the main page, which currently allows the increasingly rare interesting debate or discussion to get kicked to page 2 far too quickly.
2
Like all pills, they are not going to solve everyone's problem, there are going to be side effects, and they were developd by a company for profit, not because the company cares about people's personal lives.

Expecting a pill to help every woman, with no side effects and made with purely selfless motives are really bizarre thing for a doctor, or anyone to seemingly expect.
3
I wonder if it has that other side effect that so many serotonergic meds seem to have: anorgasmia. Wouldn't that just suck if you started to feel horny again but couldn't come?
4
Good wine and good chocolate. Duh.
5
I mighta said this before, but its gonna be a weird world when drugs exist that will genuinely (temporarily) turn any person into an insatiable sex maniac. It'll happen eventually, and they'll make today's date-rape drugs look like tic tacs.
6
It's nice to finally see some rational commentary about this medication. Too many folks out there act as though this isn't a real medical issue or just want to rant about BIG PHARMA MAKING MONEY or some shit.
7
when they came up with a lady-boner drug that precludes drinking booze, they should have started over.
9
@8: I agree with you, which is why I did not say any of those things, or pressure anyone to take this pill.

My comment was responding to the doctor's seeming surprise that a pill came out with side effects, created for profit, and that could not help everyone. Like every other pill ever produced.
10
@7: Exactly.
11
Sooooo Addyi is basically less effective and has more negative side effects than three glasses of wine. Or what @4 said.

@5 the side effects of which will be homicidal cannibalism.
12
Great. The women get to pass out.
Everybody happy now?
Well honey, why don't you want sex? Didn't you take your sex pill today..
Charming. Just charming.
13
@5 Lance Thrustwell

I think you could get a good start on that product by juicing me like Violet Beauregarde.
14
Anyone who read the Dan Bergner book Dan Savage was promoting a couple of years ago knows the answer: female desire is fickle, and no pill will change the fact that a LTR will eventually kill any sexual desire for your long term partner. Sad, but true. Especially if you're not part of the monogamish crowd.
15
Emily Nagoski at thedirtynormal.com has a lot to say on the subject.

For me, I went through a several month (over a year?) dry spell in one relationship, and "the sex wasn't worth having" seems like a pretty accurate explanation. I'm not sure I would have seen it that way at the time though. The problem is I don't doubt pills are a lot cheaper and easier to start using than sex therapy -- so even if they're less effective, they're going to look like a better solution to most people.

@2,9 -- that critique would make way more sense in a different context. In a context where 20% of women in the study experience the side effects and less than that got any benefit from it (and then only after 4-8 weeks...makes you wonder how the placebo group was doing at 4-8 weeks)...that's a spectacularly ineffective drug. Not all medications that have a nonzero beneficial effect are actually worth having out there as options.
17
@5: Don't tic tacs already do that?
18
@16, excellent comment.

I do not condemn the profit motive in Big Pharma, but if they are pushing a drug with limited benefit for the narrow subset of women for which it is designed and carry black box warnings (substantial downsides), it begins to smell bad.

What happens when things start to smell bad? People start questioning whether their pockets are being picked - as one sees with Statin drugs. Even someone like me, trained in hard sciences and still tangentially involved in the medical field, begins to develop some skepticism regarding what Pharma is selling. You really do not want that - not the medical field where people need vaccines and antidepressants. I really wish the government would re-institute a bar on advertisement. It puts tremendous pressure on the learned intermediaries - the doctors.

I also understand (but have not confirmed) that much of the grass root effort to push this as a equal rights issue when the FDA shot it down the first time was funded by the pharma companies.

The FDA needs to do its job.
19
@16: I do find it odd that there seems to be a real resistance to the idea of this pill, and it is being criticized for reasons that many medications are not, it is not like this is the only pill that has come out recently with bad side effects and only helpful for a small minority of people, and likely better left to other means of treatment.

One wonders if it is because most new medications escape public notice, since they are boring, or is it because the idea of a pill that boosts female libido is a bit too close to "spanish fly" and the rapey undertones that has in our society, and other ideas we have about "proper" female sexuality.
20
@2 My understanding is that those bizarre expectations among doctors have origins in the Hippocratic oath.
22
@19: Agreed, "Boosts sexual arousal" is a FAR more interesting headline than "lowers your LDL".

But our future will be full of new drugs for very specific classes of patients. Some of them will be great - real cancer cures but only for a specific cancer in people with a specific genotype. They will be life-saving in those cases. But probably also available for off-label use and there will be a huge profit motive to market them more broadly than the originally approved purpose. Alas, at a time when the FDA is relaxing its approval, prescribing and marketing supervision, these new drugs should have much MORE specific prescribing regulations than anything marketed in the past.
23
its a dud. Hey, it's just for women, so what's the problem?
Now, if they could just make one that shuts her mouth.
One to open her legs. One to shut her mouth. Ah, Paradise.
24
Seriously, with such worrying side effects and such little real
proof it helps do what it intends to do,
Why has this been approved.
25
Serious question, even though this will sound ignorant. Have they tried a short-acting "female Viagra" that does essentially the same thing as the Viagra prescribed to males? Or would they be one and the same? I would think the type of women described in the the blog post - those having regular sex but not feeling aroused as often as they'd like - could benefit from feeling more physically stimulated in advance of having sex. Maybe not the same as an erection, but similar to the effect Viagra has on men. Is that not possible? If not, why not? Forgive my ignorance.
26
I think, #25, that you have just described what they were actually looking but couldn't find. That is, the gold standard would be a short-acting drug that aroused the woman and made her receptive to having sex within a certain time-frame after taking the drug and with a minimum of side effects. Viagra works on specific male physical reactions -- lets guy who is aroused have the physical ability to penetrate his sex partner. He wants to have sex -- just needs a hydraulic lift, so to speak, to be able to do the deed. This is kind of the opposite of the situation with the woman. She is able to have sex -- can be penetrated -- but doesn't want to! That is why calling this the "female Viagra" is totally off base.
27
Minimal efficacy, serious risks, potentially dangerous side effects. Typical of brain chemical-targeting drugs. And marijuana is Class 1. The FDA is beyond absurd.
28
What #27 said.

Another question: Would Viagra, Cialis, etc., produce a similar result in women? The idea is to increase blood flow to the genital region, which would help women with lubrication, I assume (I'm not a medical expert).

A further question: Desire is in the brain. Instead of a pill, shouldn't there be other ways to increase desire in most women? Sexy stories, fantasies about a movie star, fantasies about a cute guy they saw? Given what Dan Savage has said in the past, women are even less suited to monogamy than men are. So maybe they need something to increase desire in a monogamous relationship.
29
@26 My question was more along the lines of @28's first question. Given the group they used for testing, described as women in healthy relationships who have regular sex but don't feel as aroused (or aroused as frequently?) as they'd like, has there been an attempt to test something that strictly makes the female genitalia feel more primed? Let's say a woman took a pill that made her clit feel tingly and this increased her desire to have her clit licked or sucked, and the increase in sensitivity also made her more likely to orgasm easily through either oral or penetrative sex, and all this resulted in greater desire for penetration. Is it just assumed that women are more complex so we must develop something that targets the brain instead? This is my question.

I understand no amount of tingling is going to make a woman want to have sex with a partner she doesn't desire at all. I'm referring to cases in which the desire has become more reactive than spontaneous. I also understand that there could never be one pill that addressed low libido for all, given the reasons for low libido are varied.

I think my question would be more aligned with those who suggest testosterone for women with low libido, the idea being that it might increase instances of thinking about and desiring sex.

30
Sometimes I wonder if men have more spontaneous desire because, even in the absence of visual or emotional stimulation, they are constantly aware of their genitals by nature of them being so external, rubbing against clothing, etc. I wonder if women who want to increase spontaneous desire could benefit from wearing something that somehow increases their own awareness of their genitals. Just a thought. Sorry to be sort of off topic here.
31
I wonder why that particular group of women was chosen to experiment on. Your low libido is only worthy of being fixed if you are a prime piece of meat (pre-menopausal) in the type of relationship approved by Big Brother (monogamous, presumed-to-be-heterosexual)?

Heaven forbid that menopausal or post-menopausal women want or enjoy sex! Heaven forbid women who are not monogamous have even more enjoyable sex with even more partners! Heaven forbid that women who want to recapture the desire they feel for other women be indulged!

Smells fishy is right!
32
I think we all have a good idea as to what would be better than this. My assumption is that the reason this was approved is that the "better than this" just isn't any where in the pipeline, so that the political insistence that women need "their" drug overwhelmed the reality that this is a very limited aid to a very limited number of women, with a fairly big payout in side effects. My big question is whether women who have always had low libido would be motivated to try this. We hear so many stories on this forum about women who just refuse to have sex once they have met their own goals -- getting a husband, having their children -- because they see it as only a negative -- no pleasure in it. Unless the women who have refused sex or rarely agree are faced with divorce, why would they think it was worthwhile for them to take this? I see a larger possible group who might consider it who have been "lying there and thinking of France" so often when they weren't feeling it that they just can't do it any more, with the real threat of a loss of their partner when they can't/won't be the recipient any more. But the women we usually think of as the low libido spouse who has cut their mate off, why would they be interested? I don't think they see lack of sex as their problem!
33
@32 Who knows. Considering it is women who initiate the majority of divorces, maybe the prospect of ameliorating the thinking of France issue would be motivating enough for some of those who wish to remain married.
34
Uh, in my experience sildenafil and tadalafil (named after the sound cue 'Ta-daa!", I believe) really do increase libido---desire can begin with a spontaneous erection, and the member is over-all healthier and more sensate for being erect more of the time....
35
Any drug that raises dopamine has the potential for being addictive.

The safe way to get the same effect of this drug is to try the Orgasmic Diet--it has a very similar effect on neurotransmitters, and few side effects and no need for a prescription.

The reason why the study women were pre-menopausal is that the lack of desire in post-menopausal women is often also related to hormones, and that should be treated first.

Viagra and other boner drugs have already been tried on women. On a very few women with circulation issues they help, but for most women they have no effect. For most women if hormones are okay and relationship and sex okay, the main issue in low libido is neurotransmitters. It doesn't help that our society puts so much pressure on women to have high serotonin. If women weren't expected to be so organized, efficient, brisk and cheerful all the time, they might have higher libidos.
36
fcl @30
Sometimes I wonder if men have more spontaneous desire because [...] they are constantly aware of their genitals by nature of them being so external, rubbing against clothing, etc.

Interesting thought, but I'm not constantly aware of my genitals, even if they are external, at least no more than I am constantly aware of my toes or whatever. Only speaking for myself here but I don't believe I'm special.

Please wait...

and remember to be decent to everyone
all of the time.

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