SANTA MONICA (CBSLA.com) — The maker of Flibanserin, which many call the 'female Viagra,' expect to know Tuesday whether the U.S. Food and Drug Administration will approve the drug.
The maker, Sprout Pharmaceuticals, touts Filbanserin will increase sexual desire in women, who are pre-menopausal.
Dr. Sherry Ross is an obstetrician/gynecologist at Santa Monica Women's Health. She said the pill works differently than its male counterpart.
"It stimulates and increases hormones in the brain that help us with sexual desire," Ross said.
Viagra has been on the market for 18 years. There are also 25 other male sexual-dysfunction medications. Women have none.
"I think if it's good enough for the men, women should have it as well," Salli Lloyd said. "We should have the choice to use the product if we want to."
The FDA has rejected Flibanserin in the past, raising concerns over side effects that include low-blood pressure, fainting and drowsiness.
But in June, an FDA committee voted to recommend the pill for approval saying benefits outweigh the risks if those risks are clearly outlined.
Ross said low female libido is a common problem. She has patients asking about it nearly every day.
"All the demands that are placed on the working women with children and issues in relationships and their partners. There's a lot of stress, and of course, that affects our ability to be sexual," Ross said.
Kelly Foreman, who just got married, said even if she may not need the pill yet, she's open to the idea. "I'm spontaneous and adventurous so yes, I probably would," said Foreman.
Industry insiders expect the FDA to approve Flibanserin. But the drug maker would not say when the medication will hit the market. However, Ross expects to see it within about six months.
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