Viagra in short

When British scientists first studied sildenafilcitrate in the late 1980s and 90s, they were looking for a potential treatment for hypertension. Early test results were unremarkable—except for one unusual behaviour from the male participants. As Dr. Michael Reitano explains: “When the study was over, the patients didn’t want to give back the unused medication.”

In another study, Reitano notes the discovery of a curious “side effect” of sildenafil: “One nurse noticed something strange when she went around to check the patients’ blood pressure. They were all lying on their stomachs. That’s when she discovered a prominent side effect of the blood pressure medication—erections. To hide the unexpected erections, the men had turned over.”

Before Pfizer shelved sildenafil as a failed high blood pressure medication, this unexpected side effect quickly became the main feature. Further testing (of a more sexual nature) soon followed. On 27 March 1998 Pfizer received FDA approval to sell the new drug as Viagra, the first oral treatment for erectile dysfunction (ED). And the way we talk about and treat erectile dysfunction—and sexual health—has never been the same.

When Pfizer released Viagra in 1998, it attracted immediate attention.The first TV ads for Viagra featured former presidential candidate Bob Dole sharing his concerns about erectile dysfunction after experiencing prostate cancer. In the commercial, Dole urged people to be courageous and “get educated about ED”.

Despite the floodgates opening, Pfizer was careful about the words they used to promote Viagra. Previously, doctors had referred to erectile dysfunction as “impotence”.However, Pfizer moved away from this lacklustre terminology.

As erectile dysfunction became a treatable condition, the stigma associated with it lessened. More men felt comfortable talking about it with their doctors, which is important due to the potentially life‑threatening implications of ED. The blood vessels in the penis are smaller than in other parts of the body, which means that erectile dysfunction can be an early indicator of other more serious problems like hypertension, diabetes and heart disease.

Twenty years after the “little blue pill” first rose to fame, the word “impotence” is a thing of the past. Erectile dysfunction still affects millions of couples, but sildenafil citrate is affordable as an inexpensive generic medication, and we are officially living in the first tentative days of telemedicine.

As Viagra enters its third decade, the stigma around ED is fading: quick and easy online doctor visits are mainstream, while prescription prices are plummeting. Viagra is all grown up and continuing to move men’s health into the future as men everywhere lead healthier and happier lives.

Ružica Štimac, MPharm / Regulatory Associate

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Marti Farm Ltd. Trade and Services
Marti Farm Ltd.
Lašćinska cesta 40, HR-10000 Zagreb
Planinska ulica 13/2, HR-10000 Zagreb
a limited liability company
Commercial Court of Zagreb
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Full company name: Marti Farm Ltd. Trade and Services
Short company name: Marti Farm Ltd.
Headquarters: Lašćinska cesta 40, HR-10000 Zagreb
Office: Planinska ulica 13/2, HR-10000 Zagreb
Legal form: a limited liability company
Court register: Commercial Court of Zagreb
Registration number: 080751121

OIB: 29969122438
Share capital: HRK 20,000.00 (paid in its entirety)
Authorized representative: Martina Diminić Smetiško, director of the company (Representing the company individually and independently, Responsible person for data protection)

Bank account: HR3623600001102197724 (Zagrebačka banka), HR4324020061100628669 (Erste banka)

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