Breaking News in Urology

April 20, 1998
Adapted from an Associated Press story

Public Clamors for Impotence Pill

New York (AP) ---Viagra has been widely available in pharmacies for little more than a week, but it is now capturing 79% of the impotency drug market. One urologist in Atlanta claims to have written more than 500 prescriptions for Viagra, the new oral agent for male erectile dysfunction from Pfizer. The drug was approved by the FDA March 27.

The drug owes its popularity less to what it does than to what it doesn't do: make strong men wince. Earlier impotence drugs had to be either injected into the penis or inserted into the urinary tract. One Los Angeles patient, who previously used performance-boosting injections, said the pill works about as well as the shots but is more discreet and less painful.

The drug's popularity more than doubled the total number of impotence prescriptions patients filled in the United States, from a total of 20,106 in the week ended April 3 to 54,474 in the week ended April 10.

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