Women s sex drive drops after dating
"This is one of first times we've seen really high quality studies for sexual dysfunction in women," Shifren tells Web MD.
She says that until recently, the only studies on women's sexual issues were very small, often short-term, and rarely well designed.
"I think it's very exciting, not only that we're hoping to have more products available for women, but that the studies are going on and they are well-designed studies," says Shifren.
It also helps explain why many supplements claim to be effective in treating sexual problems, such as low sexual desire.
Because expectations play such a large role in sexual desire, over-the-counter products may claim that they're effective, but it's likely just a placebo effect.
"It's really important for women to realize that any of the over-the-counter products they may use have not been tested for efficacy and safety," says Shifren.
Phyllis Greenberger, MSW, president of the Society for Women's Health Research says more women report sexual problems than men, but research and treatment for women's sexual problems still lags behind.
"For example, from 1990 to 1999, nearly 5,000 studies were published on male sexual function, but there were only 2,000 women's studies," says Greenberger.
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But experts say research into women's sexual function is slowly catching up in the post-Viagra era.