March 2012 Archives

No Justice, No Viagra

Thumbnail image for news-icon.jpgFemale lawmakers in the US aren't the only ones using Viagra to get political leverage. Hospital pharmacists in Italy are threatening a "Viagra strike" to protest proposed government reforms that they say will favor licensing of private pharmacists.

The pharmacists are focusing on Viagra because it's a popular drug, but limiting its availability "does not put patients' health at risk." That's true, but the resulting sexual frustration could have serious repercussions.

Will there be Viagra riots in Rome? We'll keep an eye on how this uprising develops.

Happy Birthday to the Blue Pill

Thumbnail image for news-icon.jpgMy how time flies! On March 27, 1998 the FDA approved Viagra, forever changing the sex lives of millions worldwide, and spawning a spam industry beyond what anyone could imagine, as well as a robust worldwide counterfeit drug trade.

Since its introduction, Viagra has had a notable cultural and social impact. But few people know of the rich musical heritage associated with Viagra. So in commemoration of its anniversary here are 5 songs that celebrate the magic blue pill with a musical tribute.

Another thing you might not think about: all those children conceived as a result of the first Viagra-fueled encounters are now high school freshman. So happy birthday Viagra, and best of luck to the Class of 2016.

The Little Viagra That Could

Thumbnail image for news-icon.jpgI always thought a trademark was a trademark was a trademark - especially if you're Pfizer. Try tacking the Viagra name onto anything in the English-speaking world, and you'll be hit with a cease and desist in no time. But I guess it's different if you can make a case that something gets lost in translation.

 A Chinese electronics company has won the right to use the name "Little Viagra" for printers or something. Printers? I see absolutely zero connection between printers and impotence, virility, or erectile dysfunction drugs - unless you want to make bad jokes about printing hard copies.

A Chinese court ruled that the Viagra name is not sufficiently well recognized in that country for the "Little Viagra" handle to cause damage to the brand or gain value from it. In China, Pfizer's little blue pills are sold under the translated name "Weige". OK, but if there's no value in the name Viagra, why the heck do they want to use it - and for office equipment no less? Maybe it comes with an endless inkjet cartridge...?

Viagra Review Board: You Go Granny!

Thumbnail image for humor_icon.jpgLooking to score a Viagra prescription? Not so fast, sonny. You'll have to get past these gals first:

viagra review board.jpgMeet the Raging Grannies Action League Viagra Review Board, who support legislation requiring rigorous testing of any male seeking Viagra, including cardiac stress tests and evaluation by a sex therapist to ascertain that the patient's impotence is not psychological in nature. A number of such bills have been floated by female lawmakers across the country in response to bills limiting women's access to birth control and abortions.

I  love these ladies' humor and creativity. Look carefully at the photo and you'll see some whimsical details: That gavel is a meat tenderizer. One granny sports a Guy Fawkes neck-kerchief. That painting behind them looks suspiciously Georgia-O'Keefe-esque. I'm not sure, but I think one of them might be wearing a navy blue Snuggie. And look at all those awesome hats.

Their point is serious though: They're all old enough to remember the days before Roe v. Wade, and are dedicated to making sure our country doesn't regress into the Dark Ages before women's reproductive freedom.

Even if they are trying to take away your Viagra, they still look like they'd be a lot more fun to hang out with than these guys:

birth control panel.png

Not So Fast There, South Korea

Thumbnail image for news-icon.jpgWith Pfizer's patent on sildenafil set to expire in May, pharmaceutical companies in South Korea are falling all over themselves to release a generic version of Viagra. No less than 29 companies have applied, and so far three have gotten approval that their product is equivalent to the real deal.

There's just one catch. Pfizer still has a patent on using sildenafil to treat erectile dysfunction - until May 2014. Pfizer is holding the line: "We cannot prevent other drug makers from manufacturing sildenafil, but they won't be able to use it for erectile dysfunction treatment," says a Pfizer Korea rep.  Is that so?

Although the courts made an example out of Israeli pharma company Teva, their Korean counterparts seem unfazed:  "We may have to release the generic on due date even if we may have to compensate Pfizer later," said a spokesman for CJ, a domestic drug company. Sounds like they're betting on some big profits.

On the other hand, maybe South Korea will suddenly have the highest rate of pulmonary hypertension (another condition treatable with Viagra) in the world.

Lady Lawmakers Play Hardball With Viagra

Thumbnail image for news-icon.jpgAs Republican legislators across the country propose bill after bill limiting women's access to contraception, abortion, and related healthcare benefits, Democratic female lawmakers are fighting back in full force and their ammo is - yes, Viagra.

The latest entry in this battle of the bills comes from Ohio state senator Nina Turner, who has introduced a bill that would require men seeking Viagra to see a sex therapist, take a cardiac stress test, and present a notarized affadavit from a sex partner confirming their impotence. 

All this just comes from Turner's deep concern for men's well-being. There's been enough attention on wombs lately: "We should show the same attention and love to men's reproductive health as we do to women's," Turner told the Huffington Post. "And my bill does that."

She denies charges that she's making light of the situation or simply trying to make a point by proposing something extreme. "I'm just as serious as a heart attack," Turner said, no doubt making a sideways reference to Viagra's potential cardiac side effects.

"I'm serious about the potential side effects of Viagra.... It's ironic that when it come to women's health people think that's a serious matter, but when it comes to a man, they think we're joking."

So far, a Viagra bill has yet to make it past a legislature. But I think there should be some conflict of interest disclosure on the lawmakers' part. It would be interesting to know how many of those Republican men are Viagra users...

New Viagra Killer? A Sonic Boom in Your Pants

Thumbnail image for research_icon.jpgEvery few years it seems, a new treatment comes along that promises to make Viagra (and other erectile dysfunction drugs) obsolete. A while back it was electrical currents. Now it's sound waves.

The treatment involves firing blasts of low powered sound waves at the patient's private parts, It's supposedly painless - just some tapping followed by a tingling sensation. The sound waves, which in other applications have been used to break up kidney stones and reduce joint inflammation, somehow stimulate the genital tissue to generate more blood vessels. That means more blood flow, and better erections.

The treatment is currently available in the UK, at a cost of about $2500 for a dozen 15-minute treatments. The machine the doctors use to administer the sound waves is a big cart-like contraption called the ED1000. Sounds like some kind of sexbot or a high tech vibrator. Well, actually, it is a high tech vibrator.

Researchers note that the treatment is only effective for those whose ED has a physical cause, such as diabetes or heart disease; it doesn't help those whose impotence is related to psychological issues. Those folks might benefit from other low-pitched sound waves - like maybe a Barry White album.

One-Man Pharmacy Busted at LAX

Thumbnail image for news-icon.jpgDrug enforcement officers reeled in a big catch last week at LAX. Kil Jun Lee, 71, of Westlake, CA, was caught trying to smuggle home some fake erectile dysfunction tablets in his luggage on his return from Korea. Sounds unremarkable - old guy goes on vacation, does a little swinging, and brings home some phony boner pills. Except this guy was packing 400,000 tablets. Kind of mind boggling. The haul of fake pharmaceuticals was worth an estimated $700,000.

bag of viagra.jpgJust to give you an idea of how much Viagra this is - a photo taken by the U.S. Department of Immigration and Homeland Security shows an enormous plastic bag full of pills that looks to be about the size of a standard pillow case. A ballpoint pen next to the bag gives it scale. And the bag is marked "1 of 5". Over half of the pills were fake Viagra, but he also had some fake Levitra and Cialis.

Homeland Security officials asked Lee if the pills were for his own use. Haha - good one, TSA.  He reportedly replied that he had a heart condition and if he took all the pills, it would kill him. Lee doesn't sound like a hardened criminal, he sounds like a misguided grandpa who somehow got mixed up in all this. He said he was very sorry and promised that he wouldn't do it again.

OH OK, Grandpa, as long as you don't do it again.

Viagra: Pro-choice Whipping Boy?

Thumbnail image for news-icon.jpgThe Viagra versus contraception faceoff is continuing in legislatures across the country, as female lawmakers in Illinois and Ohio are proposing bills that would require men seeking a Viagra prescription to view a video about Viagra's side effects that graphically depicts treatment for priapism. They don't go into detail about what the treatment is, but the video is described as "horrific". Treatment for priapism usually involves injecting drugs into the penis, or surgically inserting a shunt.

Said Ohio state Senator Nancy Turner, "All across the country, including in Ohio, I thought since men are certainly paying great attention to women's health that we should definitely return the favor."

At the same time, there has been a huge backlash against conservative talk radio legend Rush Limbaugh for his incendiary comments aimed at a female law student who was going to testify to a congressional panel about birth control and insurance coverage, calling her a "slut", a prostitute, and requesting that she videotape herself having sex.

Critics have responded by pointing out Rush's Viagra use (he was busted in an airport a few years ago for having Viagra tablets without a prescription). So far, thank goodness, I don't think anyone has called out for a Rush Limbaugh sex tape.

Hawn-eymoon's Over: Goldie Pulls Out of "Viagra Diaries"

Thumbnail image for news-icon.jpgHBO's series-in-the-works "The Viagra Diaries", whose lead character has been dumped by her husband of 35 years, just went through a sudden breakup itself, as star Goldie Hawn exited the show.

Reports are that the split was mutual. Hawn's relationship with the rest of the team had gotten "bumpy", or she was just plain being difficult. HBO isn't commenting.

Meanwhile, comment-board consensus is that Kim Cattrall would be the logical replacement, although at 55, she may be a little too youthful to pull off playing a 60-someting-year-old. Although if production on this show keeps dragging along at the pace it has, she might well be pushing 60 by the time they're ready to begin taping.

About this Archive

This page is an archive of entries from March 2012 listed from newest to oldest.

February 2012 is the previous archive.

April 2012 is the next archive.

This is the blog for the Viagra Stories website, aka where real people share their experiences taking Viagra.