79. Sildenafil: more than a quack’s erection?

January 31, 2018 Sticky Thoughts No Comments

Sildenafil (known for instance as Viagra): who needs it? The real question is: does it work at all in physiologically enabling an erection?

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I don’t know. What I do know, is that nobody knows.

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Really. Nobody knows. Hasn’t it been tested then? Of course it has, but never properly! Let me explain. But beware, you may lose faith in more than only the blue pill.

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I’ve done a thorough literature search about this. I’ve looked at many hundreds of papers about how sildenafil has been tested. Amazingly, I have not found one proper paper that discusses the testing of sildenafil against an ‘active placebo’. This is crucial. In my view, there would even better be no testing at all than having this situation…

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In contrast to a passive placebo, an ‘active placebo’ is, as you may know, a placebo with side effects. In the best of worlds, these side effects even mimic as much as possible the side effects of the medication itself to which it is compared.

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So I found that sildenafil has only been tested against the proverbial ‘sugar pill’. OK. Give me the sugar pill. What does my body feel? Nothing of course. Then give me an active placebo. This is the placebo-with-lots-of-side-effects. What does my body feel? Certainly a lot. Does it make a difference? You bet!

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Namely, if I expect that the pill works on my masculinity, then in the second case chances are much higher that I will feel a placebo-effect (the family jewels becoming bigger). This is because the deep expectation of my ‘body & soul’ will be much higher than in the first case. Tremendously much higher, especially if the side effects (as in the case of sildenafil) are cardiovascular and mimic for a great deal the effects of sexual arousal.

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Concisely put: a study that compares sildenafil to a passive placebo and shows a positive result for sildenafil, gives no clue as to what is the cause of this result: pharmacology or psychology.

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So: does sildenafil work? I don’t know. Nobody knows. Does anyone care to properly investigate it in the end? I am. My main argument is that it’s of the utmost importance to be ‘true’, especially in the case of sexuality. Then of course there are also the physical costs of the side effects, the dangers, the economic costs…

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But the main argument: truthfulness. This is not abstract, let alone superficial. It goes deep down into body and mind. It cannot be more concrete. It is you! It’s about your deepest and concrete feelings. It’s about your deepest and concrete relationship and wellness. It’s, very concretely, about your very soul. Can anything be more important?

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Actually, sildenafil is just an example. The medical truth is: there are many medications of which we don’t really know at all how effective is their pharmacology. The future will look back on the present age and see us as the ignorant beings that we are.

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Sometimes I really do want to escape to the future…

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