.One need only mention Viagra to denote a host of controversy surrounding the treatment of women’s health by our society and our government. While the drug has been an enormous financial success for Pfizer, it’s also been a consistent point of discussion in the debate about female reproductive health, birth control, and women’s versions of the drug itself. The latter has been markedly slow in coming to fruition since Viagra came on the scene, which seems to reflect a deep societal prejudice against female sexual liberation, even today. But now, according to a New York Times Magazine cover story, a lady’s libido helper could finally be on its way.
The proposed drug, Lybrido, is currently going through tests. The inventer, Adriaan Tuitan, plans to present the results of his research to the FDA as early as this summer. The interesting thing about Lybrido, though, is that it appears to target the female psyche as much as the body. The article’s author, Daniel Bergner, writes, “Give a man an erection, and his sensitized nerves and enhanced feelings of power are going to feed his drive. Women, research has shown, are less cognizant of genital arousal, and probably for this reason, Viagra-like substances haven’t done enough to raise women’s ratings of desire in past experiments.” So, a female version of the drug has to address problems in libido-suppressing serotonin and libido-enhancing dopamine, ideally giving the latter a temporary advantage. And while Lybrido does contain testosterone, and is largely similar to Viagra, it differs in that it offers both increased genital blood flow and mental awareness of the same.
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