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13 Feb 2003

medication to increase my girlfriends sex drive.
we have both discussed this issue and agree we need a stimulant to enhance her very low sex drive.please assist with correct medication or "sex" drug.
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Sexologist
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01 Jan 0001

There is no proof that ginseng, rhinoceros horn, or oysters have an effect on human sexual reaction. But might some foods and OTC drugs eventually be proven to affect sexual appetite? Some big obstacles exist to answering this question. The placebo effect is one scientific stumbling block.

"The mind is the most potent aphrodisiac there is," says John Renner, founder of the Consumer Health Information Research Institute (CHIRI). "It's very difficult to evaluate something someone is taking because if you tell them it's an aphrodisiac, the hope of a certain response might actually lead to an additional sexual reaction."

Because the psychological complications are absent in animals, some studies have been done on the effect of certain drugs on animals' sexual activity. One substance that was tested extensively in animals is yohimbine. Obtained from the bark of an African tree, yohimbine has been used for centuries in Africa and West India for its supposed aphrodisiac properties. It supposedly works by stimulating the nerve centers in the spine that control erection. FDA called the results of preliminary animal studies "encouraging," but animal studies cannot be relied on to show the effectiveness of the drug in humans.

In people, the only available evidence is anecdotal and subjective. To scientifically measure sexual stimulation, a valid human study would have to be performed in the laboratory, comparing a placebo (an inert pill with no active ingredients) to the test aphrodisiac. Preferably, neither the researchers nor the patients would know who was getting the test substance. Because of cultural taboos, few such studies have been undertaken.

A second obstacle to obtaining proof of aphrodisiac effects is that some drugs may not actually have specific sexual effects, but may change a person's mood and therefore seem to be an aphrodisiac. For example, alcohol has been called a "social lubricant." People drink for many reasons, including to relax, reduce anxiety, gain self-confidence, and overcome depression. Because sexual problems can be caused or worsened by psychological stress, moderate drinking might seem like a sexual enhancer. In fact, it merely lessens inhibitions.

Alcohol is actually a depressant, and so, as the porter in Shakespeare's Macbeth observed, it "provokes the desire, but it takes away the performance." And drinking too much actually decreases desire.

No Quick Fix
Despite the lack of scientific evidence of safety and effectiveness, the fraudulent OTC love potion industry thrives to this day. Marketers use a "blatant snake-oil approach," according to CHIRI's Renner. He estimates that the aphrodisiac sellers, who do much of their business by mail-order, take in revenues in the hundreds of millions of dollars a year.

FDA sends warning letters to companies that make aphrodisiac claims, stating that the agency may take further regulatory action if the violations continue. "In the health fraud area, when they get a warning letter, most people take their profits and run," says Joel Aronson, director of FDA's division of nontraditional drugs. "They don't want to get into a legal battle with the agency because it could involve protracted, expensive litigation."

Aphrodisiac experimentation isn't just a rip-off--it can be deadly. Spanish fly, or cantharides, is probably the most legendary aphrodisiac--and the most dangerous. Made from dried beetle remains, the reported sexual excitement from Spanish fly comes from the irritation to the urogenital tract and a resultant rush of blood to the sex organs. But Spanish fly is a poison that burns the mouth and throat and can lead to genitourinary infections, scarring of the urethra, and even death.

To avoid being taken for their money or their lives, individuals with sexual problems should seek a physician's advice. A lack of sexual energy or ability in men or women could be caused by something as simple as stress or a medication one is taking, or as serious as an underlying condition like diabetes or high blood pressure.

A doctor can diagnose a sexual problem and recommend treatment. If necessary, a doctor can prescribe a drug to treat sexual dysfunction. Testosterone replacement therapy is one prescription option for men whose natural testosterone level is not within the normal range, but its serious potential side effects call for a physician's supervision. For those with an impotence problem that isn't caused by low testosterone levels, the new "Caverject" injection may be the answer.

"People will continue to have false hopes of finding easy ways of resolving their problems," says Aronson. And so the hunt for the elusive love drug persists. A universal aphrodisiac may never be found, but experts agree that what's good for your overall health is probably good for your sex life too.

A good diet and a regular exercise program are a more dependable path to better sex than are goats' eyes, deer sperm, and frogs' legs. A good mental state is equally important.

Maybe the wishful search for a cure-all drug should be abandoned in favor of an easier, more reliable mechanism: the erotic stimulation of one's own imagination. To quote renowned sex expert "Dr. Ruth" Westheimer, Ed.D.: "The most important sex organ lies between the ears."

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