Here’s good news for frustrated Pinoy males! Dapoxetine, the first and only drug specifically developed and approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the treatment of premature ejaculation (PE), is now available in the Philippines.
“Dapoxetine significantly improves control over ejaculation, enabling men to control and delay ejaculating thereby enhancing sexual satisfaction of the couple while reducing personal distress and interpersonal difficulty,” said Dr. George Lee Eng Geap, consultant urological surgeon, Gleneagles Hospital in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
“The availability of dapoxetine is welcome news for Filipino men and their partners who are affected by PE, the most common male sexual disorder. Finally, men no longer have to risk their health and safety by trying unproven and non-FDA approved medications, herbal teas and supplements,” added Dr. Ulysses Quanico, president of the Philippine Urological Association (PUA).
Lee and Quanico recently spoke during the “Media Briefing on Premature Ejaculation” organized by A. Menarini Philippines (AMP) at the Holiday lnn Galleria in Pasig City.
PE is characterized by a lack of perceived control over ejaculation as well as negative personal consequences, such as distress or interpersonal difficulty, which leads to a decrease in sexual satisfaction and overall quality of life for both men and their partners.
PE is the most common sexual dysfunction in men yet it remains underdiagnosed and undertreated. The Asia Pacific PE Prevalence and Attitude Study showed that up to 1 in 3 men is afflicted with this condition.
The impact of PE on couples is evident. The 2013 Asia-Pacific Sexual Behaviors and Satisfaction Survey revealed that 91 percent of men in the Philippines find it highly important that they sexually satisfy their partners. They want to make their partners feel happy, loved and satisfied.
The same survey said seven out of 10 Filipinos (72 percent) were concerned about not being able to sexually satisfy their partners. Almost half (46 percent) were concerned about losing control too early or not being able to control when to ejaculate.
Even more tragic is the fact that PE can erode relationships. One in five men (20 percent) with PE said that the condition could lead to a relationship breakdown or divorce.
“Men with PE are often reluctant to discuss their condition or are in denial. Their partners, on the other hand, avoid raising the topic for fear of hurting the man’s feelings. This communication gap hinders PE diagnosis and treatment,” Lee said.
“Because of the social stigma attached to PE, very few couples and even fewer men dare speak about it,” Quanico said.
To bring the problem out into the open and increase awareness on the condition, the PUA and AMP recently signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) to jointly implement an advocacy campaign on PE. The general public is encouraged to visit www.controlPE.ph or e-mail inquire@controlPE.ph for accurate and up-to-date information about PE. They can also take the self-diagnostic test and find a doctor who can help in PE diagnosis and management.
Although the exact cause of PE remains unknown, research has revealed that the problem involves a complex interplay of both psychological and biological factors. Lee said the neurotransmitter serotonin plays a central role.
Studies have shown that adequate levels of serotonin in the junctions between neurons or brain cells – synapses – help delay ejaculation. Men with PE have low levels of serotonin in the synapses.
“Dapoxetine works by inhibiting a protein that transports serotonin away from the synapses, thereby increasing the synaptic levels of serotonin and consequently controlling ejaculation” said Lee.
Dapoxetine is indicated for men with PE aged between 18 and 64. Proven to work effectively on the first dose for most men, dapoxetine can be taken as needed, one to three hours before intercourse, with a full glass of water. Optimal effect is usually achieved after approximately six doses taken within 4 weeks.
“We advise men to visit www.controlPE.ph, take the self-assessment test, and consult their doctor for proper diagnosis and management,” said Dr. Digna Almeida, AMP medical affairs director.