FDA approves Vyleesi to treat low sexual desire in women

The new drug is a shot that's only taken before sex

The FDA has approved a new drug, Vyleesi, to treat hypoactive sexual desire disorder (HSDD) in women who haven’t yet gone through menopause. Vyleesi is only the second drug that’s been approved for the treatment of HSDD. The first was Addyi, which was approved in 2015.

Addyi is a pill that must be taken every day. The most common side effects include dizziness, nausea, tiredness, dry mouth, and problems with sleep. Drinking alcohol too close in time to taking a dose of Addyi can increase the risk of severe low blood pressure and fainting.

Vyleesi, on the other hand, is a shot you give yourself rather than a pill, and it’s used only when you’re going to have sex. It’s taken at least 45 minutes before sex. The most common side effects of Vyleesi are nausea and vomiting, flushing, headache, and reactions at the site of the injection. In trials, Vyleesi increased blood pressure.

If you are looking for help with low sexual desire, talk to your health care provider. There are many possible causes for low desire and there may be things you can do. Your provider can also tell you more about these medications and help you figure out if one of them is right for you.

Written by Lauren Kernan, MA

Lauren Kernan is the Director of Content and UX Strategy for Bedsider and Abortion Finder. In her spare time, she can be found sewing or starting and giving up on various other crafts.

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