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Viagra Plus Testosterone Gel May Treat ED Better

Benefits Men Who Have No Success With Viagra Alone
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WebMD Health News

Aug. 6, 2004 -- Men with low testosterone levels who suffer from erectile dysfunction and have tried Viagra without success may benefit from adding a testosterone gel to their impotence treatment plan.

Nearly 30% to 50% of men with erectile dysfunction who take Viagra don't respond adequately to treatment. The reason could be low levels of the sex hormone testosterone, according to a new study published in the Journal of Urology.

Low levels of the hormone could lead to a low sex drive and erectile dysfunction, depression, fatigue, and osteoporosis in men.

The study tracked 75 men aged 18-80 years old with low levels of testosterone and erectile dysfunction. All the men were in stable, heterosexual relationships and had failed to respond to treatment with 100 milligrams of Viagra.

For 12 weeks, the men took Viagra in combination with either the testosterone gel (AndroGel) or a placebo gel. The gel is applied to the skin and is absorbed slowly resulting in an increased blood level of testosterone. Viagra improves erectile dysfunction without causing an increase in testosterone levels.

Researchers gauged the men's sexual function, quality of life, and testosterone levels at the start of the survey and every four weeks throughout the study.

The men using the testosterone gel along with Viagra improved in every category. Men receiving testosterone gel reported a 34% improvement in impotence compared with a 17% improvement seen in men taking the placebo gel. They also reported a 28% improvement in orgasmic function compared with only a 4% improvement reported in men taking the placebo.

Overall satisfaction also improved, with men receiving AndroGel reporting a 32% improvement compared with a 10% improvement in overall satisfaction in men on placebo.

The benefits were noted about four weeks into the study.

The researchers conclude that men seeking treatment for erectile dysfunction should be screened for low testosterone before beginning therapy and using testosterone gel along with Viagra may be better for men with erectile dysfunction and low testosterone levels than just taking Viagra alone.

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