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Male Drugs for Female Sexual Dysfunction

Over the last twenty years, significant advances have been made in the cure and treatment of male sexual dysfunction. Less visible progress has been made in understanding and treating female sexual disorders (FSD), a complex and multi-layered problem.

A team of researchers has undertaken a new approach in the lab to understanding how and why FSD occurs in general, and the impact of the vasculature (the vessels in the body that carry blood, such as arteries and veins) in particular.

The findings of their latest study suggest that the drugs that help men may some day also address some forms of female sexual dysfunction.

New evidence suggests that female sexual dysfunction may be, in part, the result of inadequate supply of blood to the female genitals and may be addressed with erectile dysfunction drugs.

Originally developed as therapy for hypertension, these drugs work by dilating blood vessels sufficiently to produce erections in males. These drugs have not been fully explored in females.

The researchers used an animal model and compared the effects of three drugs used for erectile dysfunction (the phosphodiesterase 5 inhibitors (PDE5I, such as Viagra® (sildenafil); Levitra® (vardenafil); and Cialis® (tadalafil)).

PDE5I was used and analyzed in female and male rat internal pudendal arteries. The internal pudendal artery supplies blood to the penis in men and to the vagina and clitoris in women. Arterial segments were contracted with phenylephrine then submitted to increasing concentrations of one of the PDE5 inhibitors.

According to Dr. Allahdadi, “PDE5I may be useful in the treatment of female sexual dysfunction caused by inadequate blood supply through the internal pudendal artery. The significant difference in how male and female pudendal arteries react to PDE5 inhibitors merits further study.”

The study team is currently exploring the different relaxation profile observed between female and male rat internal pudendal arteries as well as functional abnormalities in internal pudendal arteries from diabetic rats.

Source: The American Physiological Association

Male Drugs for Female Sexual Dysfunction

Rick Nauert PhD

Rick Nauert, PhDDr. Rick Nauert has over 25 years experience in clinical, administrative and academic healthcare. He is currently an associate professor for Rocky Mountain University of Health Professionals doctoral program in health promotion and wellness. Dr. Nauert began his career as a clinical physical therapist and served as a regional manager for a publicly traded multidisciplinary rehabilitation agency for 12 years. He has masters degrees in health-fitness management and healthcare administration and a doctoral degree from The University of Texas at Austin focused on health care informatics, health administration, health education and health policy. His research efforts included the area of telehealth with a specialty in disease management.

APA Reference
Nauert PhD, R. (2018). Male Drugs for Female Sexual Dysfunction. Psych Central. Retrieved on January 24, 2019, from
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 8 Aug 2018
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 8 Aug 2018
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