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Updated 23 November 2016

FDA approves drug for pain during sex in older women

Lower oestrogen levels in vaginal tissue can lead to vulvar and vaginal atrophy in post-menopausal women, causing painful intercourse.

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Intarosa has been approved by the US Food and Drug Administration to treat women who have moderate-to-severe pain during sexual intercourse caused by post-menopausal vulvar and vaginal atrophy (VVA).

Once-daily insert

As the FDA explained, during menopause oestrogen levels can decline in vaginal tissues, leading to VVA.

The product, contained in a once-daily insert, is the first approved to include the active ingredient prasterone, also known as dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA), the agency said recently in a news release.

Read: Pill may ease sex pain for older women

The product's effectiveness was established in two 12-week clinical trials involving 406 post-menopausal women, aged 40 to 80. The most common adverse reactions included vaginal discharge and abnormal Pap smear, a test used to detect cervical cancer.

DHEA is contained in some dietary supplements, although the FDA said it hasn't evaluated the safety and effectiveness of such supplements.

Intarosa is marketed by Endoceutics Inc., based in Quebec, Canada.

Read more:

When sex hurts

Sex and the menopause

Preventing pain during sex

 
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