Viagra Prescriptions On The NHS Triple In 10 Years As Stigma Fades | Men’s health

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The number of prescriptions for Viagra and other erectile dysfunction drugs has almost tripled over the past decade as they have become cheaper and carry less stigma.

NHS Digital figures show that there were 2,958,199 prescriptions for sildenafil in 2016, up from 1,042,431 in 2006. The number of prescriptions increased by 43% between 2014 and 2015, and by 16% between 2015 and 2016 .

The Royal College of General Practitioners (RCGP) attributed the sharp increase to a growing awareness, with the drug becoming cheaper and less stigma attached to its purchase, with more and more men feeling ‘enough to do it. comfortable to consult their doctor ”.

But they also warned of the dangers of buying Viagra online without a prescription, as data showed that £ 17million of unlicensed and counterfeit Viagra was seized last year.

Doctors noted a tendency for younger men to buy the drug over the Internet to improve their sexual performance or to counter the use of other recreational drugs they have taken that make it harder to get an erection.

RCGP President Professor Helen Stokes-Lampard said it was not a good idea to buy sildenafil citrate, the generic name of Viagra, online without a prescription. She said it was a “potent drug that could have potentially unpleasant side effects and serious interactions with other drugs.”

She said, “Buying drugs online can seem convenient, and it can be interesting for patients who are embarrassed to discuss medical issues with their doctor in person, but it is not without risk. First, there is no way for someone to know what they are buying is what they think it is, and that in and of itself can have profound consequences.

“There are a number of medical reasons why the drug would not be prescribed – for example, if a patient has a heart or liver problem, or if they have low blood pressure.”

Increase in registrations

The Medicines and Health Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) said more than £ 17million of unlicensed and counterfeit Viagra was seized last year, up from £ 20.9million in 2015- 16, but well up from the figure of almost £ 7million in 2014-15.

A number of websites are now selling generic products at low cost without a prescription, but research has shown that a large percentage of them may be fake.

The cost of Viagra fell 85.9% as generic alternatives became available in 2013 and it became available for a wider range of conditions.

Danny Lee-Frost, Law Enforcement Officer at MHRA, said: “We are seeing a lot of unauthorized generic erectile dysfunction drugs from India, that’s a big deal… so these are pharmaceutical companies in India who manufacture their own versions of these drugs. . They are not allowed to be supplied in the UK so cannot be supplied by a UK doctor and can be found on websites scattered all over Britain.

He added: “The other way is from someone based in the UK: the term for that is a direct sender. They receive large parcels from suppliers in the Far East or China and it becomes their stock which they then distribute by post…. ”

Seth Rankin, NHS GP and managing director of the London Doctors Clinic, a private general surgeries chain, said he had heard of young men buying Viagra online. “We see a number of guys taking [Viagra] for recreation and we might have a side question like, “my friends are using it – is there any harm?” People don’t come and ask for it directly, most get information from friends and order it online.

He added: “It’s the same as using steroids in gyms, they’re usually a little worried about taking them and want to check that it’s okay.”

Rankin said many millennials took the substance because they watched a lot of porn and felt the pressure to perform. But they also took it to counter the effect of substances such as alcohol or drugs, which can cause erectile dysfunction.

£ 49.4million of counterfeit erectile dysfunction drugs seized in the past five years

Hayley Quinn, a dating expert, agreed that the use of Viagra was becoming more and more common. She said it was common for men to be more concerned with performance than women realize.

“The ease of purchasing Viagra has increased,” she said. “These people are using Viagra recreationally or as a counterbalance to other recreational drugs… it’s seen as pushing the boundaries, for a certain group of people. Their thinking about Viagra has changed and it is considered to be something that improves sexual performance.

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