Viagra (sildenfil citrate) is apparently not just for men – but not in the way
you think. New research on the Pfizer drug commonly prescribed for male erectile
dysfunction, published in the journal Human Reproduction, shows that when used
as a vaginal suppository, it can relieve serious menstrual cramps.
small American study, which was financed by the US Department of Health and
Human Services, included 25 women aged 18 to 35 suffering from menstrual pain
(primary dismenorrhea). The women were given 100 mg. of sildenafil or a
placebo as a suppository and asked to rate the amount of pain they had during
the next four hours. Women who vaginally inserted the blue pill reported
significant relief of their menstrual cramps, as much as twice the alleviation
of pain as women in the control group.
Put on the market for men in 1998,
more than 230 million prescriptions have since been given to some 35 million men
around the world. Every second, six Viagra pills are sold, according to
The drug works in men by expanding the blood vessels and
increasing blood flow to the genitals.
According to a pharmaceutical
expert, women in Israel can be prescribed Viagra for menstrual cramps, even
though this problem is not a clinical indication for use of the drug. Every time
it is prescribed, the female patient’s doctor has to fill out a special form to
send to the Health Ministry for unconventional use of a drug. Viagra is not
included in the basket of health services, so it is not paid for by one’s health
The price of Viagra pills has gone down considerably as patent
protection is withdrawn.
It now costs around NIS 27 per pill.