Debate Erupts (Again) Over Women’s Libido Drugs

Teresa Carr in Undark:

In explaining the rationale for approving female-libido drugs, the FDA often cites the “unmet medical need.” Yet researchers are fiercely divided over the question of just how many women lack libido and how best to help them. If you believe advertising for Vyleesi, American women suffer from an epidemic of insufficient horniness. More than 6 million premenopausal women — one in 10 — have low sexual desire, the website claims.

Research doesn’t support the notion that millions of women are sexually deficient, said Tiefer, whose long career includes more than three decades as an associate clinical professor of psychiatry at the New York University School of Medicine. “There is no standard of what is ‘normal sexual desire,’” she said, noting that desire varies widely and depends heavily on a woman’s personal situation and culture. After all, she points out, in the 19th and early 20th centuries some doctors diagnosed nymphomania in women deemed to enjoy sex too much.

More here.