Viagra Blindness In Men: Is It True Or False?

viagra blindness

The field of medicine conducts research every time, and human sexual health and reproduction are not left out. For men suffering from erectile dysfunction, Viagra has been very helpful since its entry into the drug market. However, recent studies on viagra blindness in men have truly implicated viagra in some men suffering from blindness.

Viagra (generic name: Sildenafil Citrate) is a medication used in the treatment of pulmonary arterial hypertension and erectile dysfunction in men. Viagra was first manufactured in 1996 and approved in 1998 for the treatment of erectile dysfunction.

It became the first approved oral treatment for erectile dysfunction in the United States. Since then, Viagra has widely and rapidly spread all over the world. This means that people find the drug very helpful and so, the demand is very high. No drug comes without its own side effects and adverse effects and Viagra is included. Common side effects of Viagra include:

  • Heartburn
  • Headaches

Common adverse effects include prolonged erections, which may lead to damage to the penis.

Must Read: Erectile Dysfunction: Symptoms, Causes and 6 Ways To Avoid It

Viagra Blindness in Men

In recent years, researchers in the field of medicine have shown that Viagra contains an agent which can cause blindness (called viagra blindness by some people). This agent is suspect to arise from one of the ingredients in the drug. These findings show that Viagra can cause permanent damage to the retina.

The scientists said that the drug is not as safe as most people think. People who have had previous cases of eye problem and those who have never had any eye problem are all at risk.

Some Australian researchers carried out several kinds of research which showed that Viagra could cause “Viagra blindness” in men with an inherited eye problem such as Retinitis pigmentosa, as well as those with normal sight, but who carry the gene for the condition.

One theory supporting viagra blindness is that erectile dysfunction drugs, which Viagra falls under, may obstruct an enzyme which is important in the transmission of light signals from the retina to the brain.

Reports from other studies show that viagra blindness is a rare condition and is caused when blood supply is reduced to the optic nerve, hence causing permanent nerve damage. Though scientific research shows the connection between the drug and blindness in men, others argue that it is rare as over twenty-three million men have used Viagra since 1998, and the reported cases are minimal compared to a large number of users.

To make their findings published in the journal ‘Experimental Eye Research’, researchers from the University of New South Wales, Australia, gave a dose of sildenafil to healthy mice and ones with a copy of the mutant gene. The scientists discovered that healthy mice experienced problems with their eyes for around two days. But mice with the gene had eye problems for a fortnight, the Mail Online reported.

The researchers also identified early signs of cell death in the mice’ retinas, indicating that the drug may cause loss of vision in people who carry the gene for the disease but have normal vision.

Read: Robot Sex Dolls: Their Pros And Cons To Your Health

Many researchers from different parts of the world are now clamouring for the manufacturers of viagra to include a warning of the rare cases of varying vision loss on the drug labels, so as to caution the users. However, this has found opposition from the makers of the drug, Pfizer Inc.

The manufacturers argue that those are rare cases, compared to the over 23 million users all over the world since 1998. The condition of the sudden loss of vision known as NAION (Non- Arteritic Anterior Ischemic Optic Neuropathy), which as mentioned, occurs when blood flow to the optic nerve is blocked, is also considered a very common cause of sudden vision loss among elderly people, hence complicating the issue more. The risk factors for this condition include heart disease and diabetes, which constitute two of the leading causes of impotence.

The manufacturers of Viagra, Pfizer Inc. already have warnings on the labels of the drugs about, one having temporary vision changes, where one can have difficulty distinguishing between green and blue or seeing blue tinges, showing the drug apparently has temporary effects on the retina, but that is a totally different issue from NAION.

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There isn’t widespread concern over these findings by several studies, but calls are slowly increasing to carry out more and bigger studies to clarify and ascertain the already existing findings.

Sources:

https://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/health-and-families/health-news/viagra-can-permanently-damage-vision-scientists-claim-9771501.htmlhttps://healthsaveblog.com/viagra-and-blindness/

The medical information provided in this article is provided as an information resource only. This information does not create any patient-physician relationship and should not be used as a substitute for professional diagnosis and treatment.
About Ochemba Callistus Chinedu 131 Articles
"Ochemba Callistus Chinedu is a certified Medical Laboratory Scientist (B.MLS). Currently, He is a Certified SEO Manager, Content writer/developer and founder of Nedufy: www.nedufy.com. He enjoys reading, writing, travelling, general health, and learning new things."

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