Drug for Depression May Heighten Libido in Women
Got libido? If not, researchers say a drug commonly prescribed for depression has been shown effective in treating lack of sexual desire in women.
A study presented to the American Psychiatric Association's annual meeting says clinical trials indicate bupropion hydrochloride, distributed by Glaxo Welcome as Wellbutrin SR and approved for treatment of depression, produced positive results in treating hypoactive sexual desire disorder.
The disorder, believed to affect up to 20 percent of women in the US, can be characterized by a lack of sexual fantasies or lack of sexual desire and can affect both men and women. However, experts stress that individuals diagnosed with the disorder still can function sexually. Currently, there's no approved drug treatment and experts say psychotherapy has proven only minimally effective. Researchers in the study funded by Glaxo Welcome say nearly one-third of the 66 women involved in the study responded to treatment with Wellbutrin SR, reporting increased sexual fantasy, arousal and interest in engaging in sex.
The women in the study ranged from 23 to 65 years of age and were not depressed, but had been suffering from hypoactive sexual desire disorder for an average of six years.
Lead researcher Dr. R. Taylor Seagraves at Western Reserve University School of Medicine says that while further research is needed, one strongly encouraging result was that 40 percent of the women at the conclusion of the study reported reaching satisfactory levels of sexual desire. All the women reported dissatisfaction before starting treatment, Taylor says.