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The downside of Viagra

Sat 1 Dec 2001 In: Living Well View at NDHA

Viagra can give you a hard on that just won't stop, but it can also cause a variety of unpleasant side effects, especially if it is combined with illegal drugs. More than three out of every four gay men in a San Francisco study who used Viagra with other drugs said they got it from friends without medical supervision or advice. Viagra makes it easier for the body to maintain an erection, and was designed for use in men who are impotent. Experts say there's no verified evidence that the drug will improve the sex life of a man who gets normal erections. Viagra is not an aphrodisiac. If you don't have sexual desire, Viagra will not have any effect. Some gay Viagra users take the drug simply to boost their sexual powers, while others appear to use the drug to counteract the erection-dampening powers of illegal drugs such as speed. Viagra can cause a number of side effects. If a man takes too much, it can cause a very painful erection that lasts for hours and can permanently damage the penis. Mixing poppers and Viagra is a particular worry. Poppers are used to relax a person's body, making receptive anal sex easier. It also gives a powerful head rush. But poppers can also relax the penis, a problem that Viagra counteracts. Unfortunately the drugs also combine to lower blood pressure. If the heart isn't pumping blood hard enough, a stroke or heart attack can result. In fact, experts have documented hundreds of fatalities among Viagra users with heart problems. While Viagra comes with instructions that mention the risk of use with poppers. Viagra's Web site ( does not specifically address particular concerns of use or abuse among gay men, although it does mention the risks of using the drug with poppers. - 1st December 2001    


First published: Saturday, 1st December 2001 - 12:00pm

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