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Tired of it taking So, So Long to get it up? Researchers Develop Viagra Spray

January 15, 1999
By The Associated Press

LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) -- Can't wait an hour for that kick from Viagra?

Two researchers from the University of Kentucky say they've come up with a nasal spray that could cut the time it takes for Viagra to work to five to 15 minutes.

“We feel because of the nature of Viagra's use that people don't want to wait an hour for results,” said Lewis Dittert, one of the researchers.

The impotency treatment pill debuted spectacularly last year, leading to millions of prescriptions and almost as many jokes. Sales have leveled off.

When used correctly, Viagra is extremely effective, allowing men to achieve an erection 60 to 70 percent of the time within an hour of taking the blue pills that sell for about $10 each.

Dittert and his UK College of Pharmacy colleague, Anwar Hussein, say the nasal spray brings Viagra in contact with mucous membranes, getting the active ingredient, sildenafil, into the bloodstream more quickly.

The pill must reach the small intestines before it can be absorbed.

So far, the researchers say, they haven't been able to generate any interest from the drug's manufacturer, Pfizer Inc.

"They said, `We're looking at it, we'll call you'," Dittert said. "We're not trying to horn in on their patent. We just think we've got a better mousetrap, and we think they ought to be interested in it.”

Pfizer spokeswoman Mariann Caprino said the company is ``always interested in advancing our medicines ... in a way that makes the medicine more patient-friendly. We certainly don't want to rule out any advance.”

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