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Over the Counter Medications for Erectile Dysfunction

by
author image Marie Cheour
Marie Cheour had her first article published in 1995, and she has since published more than 40 articles in peer-reviewed publications such as "Nature" and "Nature Neuroscience." She has worked as a college professor in Europe and in the United States. Cheour has a Ph.D. in cognitive psychology from the University of Helsinki.
Over the Counter Medications for Erectile Dysfunction
Over the Counter Medications for Erectile Dysfunction Photo Credit Jupiterimages/Polka Dot/Getty Images

Numerous remedies are available to treat erectile dysfunctions, or ED. Some of these have been shown to be effective, according to MayoClinic.com, while others are not only ineffective but may even be dangerous. It is crucial to consult a doctor before taking any over-the-counter drugs for ED. Since ED is often caused by reduced blood flow from blocked arteries, such lifestyle changes as exercising and keeping weight within a normal range can also improve the condition.

Prelox

Prelox in a drug that combines two blood flow-enhancing ingredients: L-arginine and pycnogenol. According to Drugs.com, both of these increase the blood flow by increasing nitric oxide levels, a chemical that expands arteries. According to a study published in the March 2008 issue of the "International Journal of Impotence Research," patients who took Prelox for a month had normal erectile function by the end of the month. Some patients even reported having normal erectile function within a day from the beginning of the treatment. Unfortunately, L-arginine also has serious side effects such as worsening of asthma symptoms, increased risk for bleeding and gastrointestinal problems.

Dehydroepiandrosterone

According to Drugs.com, dehydroepiandrosterone, or DHEA, is a supplement that may treat erectile dysfunction. It has been claimed to enhance sexual desire and functions, improve mental functions, as well as slow down the aging process. Some studies, such as one published in the "Urology" Journal in March 1999 by Dr. W.J. Reiter, showed that erectile function improved after DHEA use. However, some studies have shown no effect, notes the University of Maryland Medical Center.

Yohimbe

Yohimbe is an evergreen tree that grows in such western African countries as Nigeria, Gabon, Cameroon, Congo and Zaire. The bark of this tree contains several alkaloids, the key alkaloid being yohimbine. Yohimbe is popularly used as an aphrodisiac to increase libido. According the Drugs.com, some studies also show that it may be effective in treating erectile dysfunction that is not caused by a physical problem. Yohimbe relaxes and dilates peripheral blood vessels, resulting in increased blood flow to the penis. Yohimbe can also have severe side effects such as hypotension, hypertension, paralysis and abdominal distress.

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