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5 Facts to Know About Addyi (‘Female Viagra’)

Female Addyi

Women suffering from low libido finally can address the issue and improve their life.

There is finally help available for premenopausal women who suffer from low libido or a persistent lack of sexual desire. After more than 16 years of hearing about the life-improving benefits of Viagra, the number one prescribed pill for male sexual dysfunction, women now have an FDA approved option of their own.

Known as the little pink pill, and often called “female Viagra”, the women-only libido drug Addyi, was recently approved by the FDA, and has hit the market as the first prescription medication that targets female sexual dysfunction.

If you suffer from low libido, you are not alone. About 40 percent of women in the U.S. experience some form of female sexual dysfunction, ranging from mild to severe. One specific type, which impacts premenopausal women, is hypoactive sexual desire disorder. It affects nearly 1 in 10 women, according to the National Institute of Health, making the disorder the most commonly reported form of female sexual dysfunction.

A Possible Solution … Finally!

Since the 1998 FDA approval of Viagra, the number one prescribed medication for male impotency, women with sexual dysfunction have been left with few treatment options, personal shame, being told they are simply “depressed” or getting older, and stuck with seeking help through herbal supplements that usually fall short of their claims.

Many women think that their condition might never improve and low libido was the new normal for them. Many relationships have been impacted by chronic low libido, and it was clearly time for research to focus on the female side of sexual dysfunction.

Until recently, very little research had even been completed on female sexual dysfunction. What had been documented suggests that hypoactive sexual desire disorder is the most prevalent of all sexual dysfunction conditions in females, and it may possibly be triggered by a hormonal or a chemical imbalance in the body. Studies show that women often suffer from it in silence. For those who speak up, and complain to their doctor about a lack of desire, they have typically been dismissed; assured that what they were experiencing was normal and did not require any treatment.

So, while erectile dysfunction in men was extensively researched and medications were developed, with much success, it is only now that women’s sexual health has received proper attention and its first prescribed option for treatment.

5 Facts to Know About Addyi

Though Addyi is called the “female Viagra”, it actually works very differently. Here are five facts to know before you take your first pill:

  • It will not produce instant (one-hour) results like Viagra. While Viagra treats a blood flow or “mechanical” issue required for sex within a male’s penis, the main issue with erectile dysfunction, Addyi, addresses three key chemicals in the brain which are connected to expected/natural sexual response.
  • Addyi (Flibanserin), started out as an antidepressant, and works by increasing dopamine and stimulates certain receptors in the brain while blocking others. Because of this, taking herbal supplements with it is not recommended and should be discussed with your doctor.
  • Increased sexual desire typically results from taking Addyi daily for up to a month before you may experience any of the drug’s positive effects. Addyi is an oral medication that could not be simpler or more convenient to use. You take your dose regularly at bedtime, and can expect to see initial benefits within the first four weeks. But, it may take up to eight weeks to feel the full effect of this medication.
  • One reported side-effect of Addyi was a feeling of dizziness. One in five women involved in the trial reported extreme fatigue, and the drug can also cause light-headedness or nausea, dry mouth, and difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep. Dizziness is the primary reason why you must take this drug at bedtime only.
  • According to clinical trial data from Sprout Pharmaceuticals, makers of the drug, females who took the Addyi experienced a 53 percent increase in sexual desire in comparison to how they rated their libido before the trials. Most women experienced benefits as soon as four weeks of taking Addyi, over a 24-week trial period.

Getting Prescribed Addyi

Once you have discussed your symptoms with your doctor and other medical causes have been ruled out, your doctor can prescribe Addyi. A tool, called the “decreased sexual desire screener”, may help your doctor diagnose HSDD, and it will soon become widely available, provided by Sprout, to health care offices around the country.

The Side Effects

As with most prescribed medication there are side-effects you should know about. Addyi’s label includes warnings not to take the medication if you:

  • Drink alcohol: Fainting or loss of consciousness can happen when you take Addyi even if you do not drink alcohol or take other medicines or herbal supplements. This is also why you take it at bedtime. Your risk of low blood pressure and fainting (loss of consciousness) is increased if the medication is taken during waking hours, if you drink alcohol, or if you take certain medicines or herbal supplements.
  • Take certain prescription or over-the-counter medicines, or herbal supplements: Do not take or start taking any new prescription medicines, over-the-counter medicines, or herbal supplements while taking Addyi until you have talked with your doctor. Your doctor will tell you if it is safe to take other medicines or herbal supplements while you are taking this prescription.
  • Have liver problems: You should not take Addyi if you have been diagnosed with liver problems.

What Does it Cost?

Because of a recent merger with the large pharmaceutical company, Valeant, Sprout Pharmaceuticals has greater ability to make Addyi affordable and more easily accessible to the patient who will benefit from it. The company states that its mission is to make the drug something that fits into any budget.

They have devised a program that will offer women Addyi for $20 per month, provided their health insurance covers the drug. If the patient lacks coverage, Sprout will offer the drug for $20 per month for the first three months, according to Bizjournals.com.

So, women will have adequate time to see if Addyi gives them desired results (it is recommended that patients stop taking Addyi after two months if they are not seeing results). If the patient is responding, the company hopes to push for more insurance companies to cover the prescription.

Time to Deal with Your Sexual Dysfunction

Medically recognized for more than 30 years, treatment for hypoactive sexual desire disorder has been very limited to herbal therapies that lack any proven results and psychological therapy.

Flibanserin (Addyi) is indicated for women meeting the DSM-IV-TR criteria for HSDD. This is defined as a persistent deficiency or absence of sexual desire and fantasies, as judged by your doctor, and this disturbance should be described as causing distress or a strained relationship for the patient.

Your doctor should also rule out the possibility that the dysfunction stems from a co-occurring medical or psychiatric condition, relationship difficulty, or the use or abuse of medication or another substance. The FDA further specifies that flibanserin is intended for acquired, generalized HSDD:

“HSDD is acquired when it develops in a patient who previously had no problems with sexual desire. HSDD is generalized when it occurs regardless of the type of sexual activity, the situation or the sexual partner.”

What causes HSDD? Some recent research indicates that causes of hypoactive sexual desire disorder may include undiagnosed health or medical problems, possible drug interactions, psychiatric problems, high levels of prolactin, or low levels of testosterone. Usually, a solid reason is hard to pinpoint or prove.

Changing Your Life with One Prescription

Sprout, the pharmaceutical company that produces Addyi (flibanserin), raised $50 million for development and clinical trials of the drug and Sprout has done extensive testing of it in more than 11,000 women. Cindy Whitehead, CEO of Sprout, was behind an unprecedented search for investors, who in the end, backed the investigational drug until it gained FDA approval. Whitehead believes it is money well spent.

The National Organization of Women also signed on in support of the approval of the drug, contending that women deserve a medication that helps sexual function, since men have had solutions like Viagra since the late 1990s.

Sprout is part of the Canadian drug company Valeant Pharmaceuticals, who recently acquired them for $1 billion, supporting the overall mission to think more globally about distribution. The plans include seeking approval for distribution of Addyi in Europe in 2016.

There are 26 approved drugs for male sexual disorders, according to a report in bizjournals.com. Now, filling the void in the marketplace to address the needs of women, Addyi is ready to make its mark as the only drug of its kind.

Addyi

Finally, there is a drug that offers hope for overcoming hypoactive sexual desire disorder.

How to Fill Your Prescription

Addyi can be bought through your local pharmacy, or you can order it online through a reputable online store, so that your privacy is protected and it is delivered discretely. Other benefits of ordering online include convenience; meaning you don’t need to make a special trip to your pharmacy to pick it up. Be certain that your online pharmacy is always available during business hours to answer your questions as needed.

If ordering online be certain that your prescription comes from an FDA-licensed distributor located in the United States. Avoid any online store that offers “generic” versions of your prescription, because there is actually no generic version for Addyi (or for even for Viagra, for that matter).

Look to a store that is trusted. FDA-licensed, and reputable. Since 1998, eDrugstore.com has helped more than 500,000 customers gain access to prescription medications, like those for male impotence, while offering first-class customer service and support.

Don Amerman has spent more than three decades in the business of writing and editing. During the last 15 years, his focus has been on freelance writing. For almost all of his writing, He has done all of his own research, both online and off, including telephone and face-to-face interviews where possible. Don Amerman on Google+