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Vyleesi offers much needed relief to women with generalized hypoactive sexual desire disorder

Female sexual dysfunction is a condition in which a woman finds it difficult to experience desire, arousal, lubrication, orgasm and satisfaction. © Shutterstock

Sexual dysfunction in women is a common problem though not widely reported. Vyleesi brings relief to patients suffering from this condition.

Written by Jahnavi Sarma |Updated : August 27, 2020 10:41 PM IST

Last year, the US Food and Drug Administration approved Vyleesi for the treatment of acquired and generalized hypoactive sexual desire disorder in premenopausal women. There are women who, for no known reason, have reduced sexual desire that causes marked distress. Experts believe that such women can benefit from safe and effective pharmacologic treatment. This condition is characterized by low sexual desire that can cause acute distress or relationship problems. Sometimes, there may be no co-existing medical or psychiatric problem that lead to this condition. It may happen regardless of the type of sexual activity, situation or partner.

Sexual dysfunction in women is a common problem though not widely reported. Many women tend to keep quiet about this and, in time, this can lead to major issues among partners. Now, with Vyleesi available in the market, women can deal with the problem of generalized hypoactive sexual desire disorder in a much better and planned manner.

How to use this medication

You need to inject Vyleesi under the skin of the abdomen or thigh at least 45 minutes before anticipated sexual activity. You must not use more than one dose within 24 hours or more than eight doses per month. Discontinue use of this drug after eight weeks if you find no improvement in sexual desire and associated distress.

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Vyleesi increases sexual desire in 25 percent patients

To test the effectiveness of Vyleesi, scientists conducted two 24-week, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trials in 1,247 premenopausal women with acquired, generalized HSDD. Most patients used Vyleesi two or three times per month and no more than once a week. They saw that around 25 per cent of patients treated with Vyleesi had an increase of 1.2 or more in their sexual desire score compared to about 17 per cent of those who took placebo. Moreover, about 35 per cent of the patients treated with Vyleesi had a decrease of one or more in their distress score compared to about 31 per cent of those who took a placebo.

Known side-effects

In some cases, there are side-effects. You may experience nausea and vomiting, flushing, injection site reactions and headache. Injection site reactions usually include redness, bruising, itching, bleeding, and numbness. Nausea may be widely reported but it goes away on its own. In rare cases, it may cause darkening of the gums and parts of the skin, including the face and breasts. Dark-skinned people are more likely to experience this problem. Sometimes, you may experience an increase in your blood pressure levels, which is usually resolved within 12 hours. An allergic reaction may happen sometimes. Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction like hives, difficult breathing and swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat. Hot flashes or flushing, a stuffy nose, and a tingly feeling may also happen sometimes.

A word of caution

Hypertensive patients must not take this drug because it may sometimes lead to a spike in blood pressure levels. Patients of cardiovascular disease must also keep away from this drug. If you experience any side-effects, seek medical attention to avoid complications.

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