Pharmaceutical

Could erectile dysfunction drug Viagra help relieve pain from menstrual cramps?

viagra Could erectile dysfunction drug Viagra help relieve pain from menstrual cramps?The so-called “little blue pill” that treats erectile dysfunction in men, may provide relief for women who suffer from painful menstrual cramps, according to a new study published in the journal Human Reproduction.Menstrual cramps, also known as primary dysmenorrhea (PD), can be bothersome for women, causing nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and dizziness. Anti-inflammatory drugs, such as ibuprofen, are often prescribed to relive the pain, but the treatment does not always work. Plus, excessive use of the medication has been associated with stomach ulcers and kidney damage.

Sildenafil citrate, which helps improve blood flow, is the drug ingredient found in the erectile dysfunction treatments Viagra, Cialis and Vardenafil. It is also approved, under the brand name Revatio, as a treatment pulmonary hypertension.

Previous research has shown that sildenafil citrate can relieve pelvic pain when taken orally, but it can cause headaches, rendering the treatment unsuitable for regular use. Researchers speculated that using the drug vaginally might cut down on side effects while proving just as effective.

The study involved randomly giving 25 women between the ages of 18 and 35 either sildenafil or a placebo. Participants were asked to rate their pain during a 4-hour period. After two hours, women in the sildenafil group showed significantly lower uterine artery pulsatility index than those in the placebo group. Women using sildenafil also reported experiencing relief from menstrual pain. There were also no side effects reported.

Researchers say they do not know why the drug relieves pain since women in both groups experienced increased uterine blood flow. However, since the drug did appear to relieve pain, it may very well serve as a viable treatment option for women.

Unfortunately, the intended sample size was not met due to loss of funding. Researchers say that larger, multi-center studies should be conducted to confirm the findings.

Source: MNT