Valentine’s Day and Female Viagra®

M. PreFontaine Heim R.Ph. FAAFM

Mary Heim, RPh, FAAFM

Valentine’s Day is fast approaching and plans are being made for the perfect “romantic evening”. The American Medical Association found that 43% of American women experienced sexual dysfunction. Sexual dysfunction can include symptoms such as lack of desire, decreased sexual arousal, and inability to attain an orgasm. The cause of sexual dysfunction results from both psychological and physical factors. Besides the special KY® preparations that are advertised on television, what are our options?

Some physicians will test women for low testosterone levels and offer low dose testosterone replacement therapy in topical formulations. The FDA has not yet approved testosterone replacement for women. Therefore, all commercial formulations are male strengths, much higher dosages than a female would need. Pharmacies like Keystone can “compound” a testosterone cream at any lower strength or concentration the physician prescribes. Testosterone is a controlled substance so refills are limited to a maximum of 5 in a six month time frame.

Keystone Pharmacy has also developed a pharmacological treatment option known as the “Dream Cream.” This is a non-hormonal cream created for women to improve sexual pleasure by enhancing arousal and sensitivity. The active ingredients in the Dream Cream at Keystone Pharmacy are Aminophylline, Ergoloid Mesylate, and Isosorbide Dinitrate (AEI). These medications work by increasing the blood flow to the clitoris and surrounding area by dilating blood vessels. The increase in blood flow improves the sensation of the nerve endings in the clitoris to enhance arousal and promote orgasm. The cream is applied to the vulvovaginal area prior to sexual activity. The formulation is tasteless and odorless.

There is a second compounded formulation available at Keystone containing Aminophylline and L-Arginine (A/L-A). L-Arginine is an amino acid necessary for nitric oxide synathase (NOS). NOS is a crucial enzyme for vaginal lubrication and genital sensation.

Many commercially available creams are labeled dream cream, but the active ingredients differ from the Keystone compounded “dream cream.” The primary active ingredient in the commercially produced dream cream is only L-Arginine. Without the additive effect of vasodilators, it may have less effectiveness than compounded dream creams.

A prescription from your physician is necessary for obtaining testosterone, AEI Dream cream or A/L-A creams from Keystone Pharmacy.

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