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"New drug boosts women's sex drive"


Source: CBC.CA

Published: 17 Nov 2021

Category: Pharmaceutical

Rating: (2 stars)

Keywords: sexual dysfunction flibanserin sex sex drive sexual satisfaction

what they said (Hover the mouse cursor over underlined words for more info)

Researchers are hailing a new drug called flibanserin as a possible remedy for sexual dysfunction in women.

Originally created to treat women suffering from depression, the pill was later found to increase the number of sexual encounters and overall sexual satisfaction among women who have hypoactive sexual desire disorder...

The original article can be found at:

how did it rate? (more information)

Criteria Rating
Total Score 3 of 8
Availability of Treatment Not Applicable
Novelty of Treatment Satisfactory (?)
Disease Mongering Satisfactory (?)
Treatment Options Not Satisfactory (?)
Costs of Treatment Not Applicable
Evidence Not Satisfactory (?)
Quantification of Benefits of Treatment Satisfactory (?)
Harms of Treatment Not Satisfactory (?)
Sources of Information Not Satisfactory (?)
Relies on Press Release Not Applicable
Quantification of Harms of Treatment Not Satisfactory (?)

what we said (Hover the mouse cursor over underlined words for more info)

This story provides very preliminary information on recent research of a new drug that is being used to increase "sexual interest" in pre-menopausal women. Unfortunately, no specific information about this research is provided. Other than knowing these women were pre-menopausal, there is no other description of the research subjects. There was a mention of an approximate doubling of the sexual events (from around 2 to just under 5 a month) but no information was provided as to whether or not this was associated with an overall improvement in quality of life or if an improvement in relationships was seen. In addition, there was no mention of side effects. Far more research and/or disclosure of completed research needs to be provided before anyone should make a decision about whether or not this is a drug that should be considered usefu

public forum

(07 Dec 2021) Carolyn Thomas from "The Ethical Nag: Marketing Ethics for the Easily Swayed" writes,

"Is it any surprise that the topic of this "news" has attracted such wide media pickup? The drug company that succesfully markets a "pink Viagra' stands to make billions. What is distressing is the number of media agencies that have bought this non-event hook, line and sinker, and are essentially pre-selling flibanserin even before any trials are published.

I'm curious about the "satisfactory" rating in your Disease Mongering category, as I've read a number of credible sources who question whether female sexual dysfunction even exists. It's ironic that this particular piece was run by CBC, given the success of their 'Passionate Eye' broadcast of the landmark documentary, Orgasm Inc. - that essentially debunks the diagnosis. More at"

Media Doctor response,

"I think you have a good point. We should re-examine our rating of satisfactory under disease-mongering."

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