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The History of Viagra: Part 1

 
Summary: The little blue pill that has save relationships and put a pep in many a man’s step began its storied life as something quite different.
 

The history of the human erection has a long and turgid history which doubtless dates all the way back to the first human penis. Though what caused the first human penis to become erect is forever lost in the sands of time; for all we know, male units remained limp until the invention of the Wonderbearskin©.

Ughtoria’s Secret. It’s a wonder why prehistoric man ever left the cave.

What we do know is that attempts to achieve and maintain an erection appear in all but the earliest recordings of humanity’s foibles and follies. From elixirs and unguents to electroshock and implants, all attempts either showed middling results or failed horribly—one need not exercise one’s imagination too much at the mention of the words “electroshock” and “implants.”

It happened in the land that gave us restraint, Queen Victoria, and the hit single “Every Sperm is Sacred–” The town of Sandwich in Kent, United Kingdom, to be precise. In the late 80s, Pfizer scientists Drs. David Brown and Nicholas Terrett were working with pyrazolopyrimidinone-class chemical compounds, which showed initial promise in dilating blood vessels and would hopefully be successful  in the treatment of hypertension and angina—a symptom of heart disease caused by a lack of blood flow to the heart. Think about it: These guys had a chemical that increased blood flow, and all they could think about was high blood pressure and heart disease.

Sandwich, Kent. The shrine toward which every Viagra-produced erection should point.

Terrett is often referred to as the Father of Viagra, and while his name is on the 1991 British patent for Sildenafil as a heart medication, he maintains it was fellow Pfizer employees Peter Dunn and Albert Wood who brought all the components together to synthesize the drug known to some  as UK-92,480 others as Sildenafil or Sildenafil Citrate and to the man on the street who needs a little boost in his trousers, Viagra.

One reason for the confusion of credit is that Pfizer employees are forbidden from discussing their involvement in a drug’s development. It is safe to say, though, that while Dunn and Wood’s names are on patent WOWO9849166A1, and the British press at the time the discovery was announced named them as the inventors of Viagra, the credit for the creation of the little blue pill that has saved so many relationships and put a pep in the step of millions of formerly un-peppy human males goes belongs to many hard-working men and women.  Think of them the next time you pop a Sildenafil Citrate. …At least you don’t have to think about baseball any more!

Next: Part II – Going With The Flow->->

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