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Dr. Kim Mulvihill ReportingThe drug Viagra was designed to treat a condition that most commonly affects older men. But new research shows younger men are demanding the drug, and that could have consequences for their health.
Since 1998 one that little blue pill has worked for millions of men. However, new research suggests a growing number of men - younger men - are not using Viagra for erectile dysfunction. They're using it for recreation. And in an attempt to enhance their sex lives.
Researchers looked at more than five million insured American adults. They found Viagra use is surging among younger, healthy men. The 18 to 45 years olds happen to be the fastest growing segment of users. Since 1998 their use soared 312 percent.
Dr. Ira Sharplip: “You can't make a superman out of a normal man.”
Dr. Ira Sharlip is an urologist at CPMC. He says younger, healthy men who use Viagra just for fun probably won't hurt themselves, but it won't help them either.
Dr. Dharplip: “If a man has a normal erection, you can't make it more than normal. I don't think Viagra does anything for a man who has normal sexual function.”
Dr. Michael Crawford is a cardiologist at UCSF. He says the problem with young men using viagra recreationally may be what they're combining it with -- club drugs such as Ecstasy or even worse, amyl nitrate or poppers.
Dr. Crawford: “Those plus Viagra can cause serious drops in blood pressure, which can cause serious drops in blood pressure which can lead to unconsciousness or death.