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Viagra: It’s Not Just for Sex Anymore

Viagra is much more than just a lifestyle drug.

Viagra is much more than just a lifestyle drug.

Viagra started out as an experimental treatment for hypertension and angina. But when experimental subjects were reluctant to give up the drugs after reporting a much happier sex life, scientists realized they were on to something possibly revolutionary.

Viagra became one of the best-selling drugs in history, and still has the dubious honor of being the most widely counterfeited drug. But things are starting to come full circle, as this popular erectile dysfunction drug is proving useful for a variety of other conditions. Here are a few of them.

Pulmonary Hypertension

One of the most important non-sexual uses for sildenafil citrate, the active ingredient in Viagra, is in treatment of a serious condition called primary pulmonary hypertension. This condition, often referred to as PPH, involves narrowing of blood vessels in the lungs that gets progressively worse. Eventually this causes the heart to weaken to the point of heart failure. Sildenafil, sold under the trade name Revatio, lowers pulmonary blood pressure and improves exercise capacity in people with PPH, often significantly improving quality of life.

Stroke

Studies in animals have shown that Viagra counters the effects of stroke, both improving neurological functioning, and reducing mortality. Tests on humans are ongoing, but researchers believe that when given within three days of a stroke, Viagra could help stroke victims (male or female) regain movement, speech, and brain function to some degree. Viagra is believed to work because of its effects on cGMP, a molecule that has a role in creation of new cells in the brain.

Pregnancy Complications

Very limited studies have been done of the effect of sildenafil on fetuses that experience restricted growth before birth, but the results were encouraging enough that trials on women whose babies experience limited growth in utero are scheduled to start this fall in New Zealand and Australia. Studies will eventually expand to Europe and North America.

Altitude Sickness

A form of altitude sickness called high altitude pulmonary edema (HAPE) can be deadly. In this illness, blood vessels constrict, and fluid can leak from blood vessels into the lungs. An experiment in France found that men taking Viagra at high altitudes had blood pressure that normalized more quickly, while the blood pressure of men taking placebos remained significantly higher longer.

Heart Failure in Dogs

Humans aren’t the only species Viagra helps. Viagra has been shown to help dogs, and even plants!

Humans aren’t the only species Viagra helps. Viagra has been shown to help dogs, and even plants!

Viagra doesn’t just help man, but man’s best friend, too. Ingrid, a pit bull mix, suffered from severe heart disease as a pup, and has stayed alive and healthy thanks to regular Viagra over the past five years. By boosting blood flow, Viagra has helped Ingrid’s heart work properly and given her a good life with a loving human family. However, she will have to take the drug indefinitely to continue to fight off her heart problems.

Wilting Flowers

Wilted flowers aren’t exactly a catastrophe, but if for some reason you really need your cut flowers to stand up straight, just 1 mg of Viagra (which is usually dispensed in 50 mg and 100 mg doses) can make them resist wilting for up to a week after they would normally fall over. Researchers in Israel and Australia actually studied this on plants as diverse as strawberries, carnations, and broccoli.

At this point you may be asking, “Viagra: is there anything it can’t do?” But remember that Viagra is a prescription drug that is not suitable for all men. It is a remarkable drug that has improved quality of life for millions of men and their partners since 1998. At eDrugstore.com, we sell Viagra at competitive prices, dispensing it through US-licensed pharmacists and shipping the same day it’s ordered, in many cases. eDrugstore.com offers a convenient, speedy way to obtain Viagra that protects your privacy online and offline, with the highest standards for online order security, and shipping in nondescript packages that are delivered directly to your door.

Photo Credits: graur razvan ionut / freedigitalphotos.net, Stuart Miles / freedigitalphotos.net

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+