The Pharmaceutical Society of Kenya is now warning about what it calls the indiscriminate use of sexual performance enhancing drugs.
The society says the drugs, commonly known as the ‘blue pill’ could lead to severe side effects such as vision loss and heart failure if used incorrectly.
The society says the drugs should only be used on the strict advice of a qualified medical practitioner.
Citizen TV’s Lillian Muli went out to find about this latest medical concern in the country.
At Goodlife Pharmacy here in Nairobi, they have a good stock of sexual performance enhancement drug given here strictly under prescription.
There are at least four of such drugs available in the market, coming in brand names such as Viagra, Strendra, Cialis and Levitra – all commonly known as the blue pill.
“Head of retail at Goodlife told Citizen TV that Viagra comes in doses of 25mg 50mg and 100mg 50 mg which are to be taken once daily, at least an hour before the engagement, a person may only take one pill,” he said
Medics say in recent years drugs, these drugs have become increasingly popular.
According to medics the drugs are effective in up to 70% of men who have the medical condition known as erectile dysfunction, but now pharmacists are warning about increased misuse of the drugs.
In a statement released this evening, the pharmaceutical society of Kenya says misusing these drugs could lead to many side effects such as nose bleeding, insomnia and even serious ones such as vision loss and heart problems.
Some people may get dizzy spells, headaches, prolonged erection, compromised breathing or even death.
Kenyans have been advised to raise alarm should they see similar symptoms as this could save a life.
Since it is a prescription drug, a urologist will need to run tests to check whether the patient has underlying conditions that could kill them.
According to medics some men are now using these pills as recreation drugs. And increasingly even younger men are resorting to the blue pill, with potentially deadly consequences.
Medics say younger people may develop preapism- an unwanted erection which is persistent- while older patients may lose their lives if the enhancement pill reacts with their medication.
Men who don’t have erectile dysfunction but use the medication may become psychologically dependent on the drug to a point of needing it in order to get an erection. This may eventually lead to erectile dysfunction.
The Pharmacy and Poisons Board in the ministry of Health says it is in fact illegal to sell these drugs without a prescription.
“They should be male above 18 and should have a diagnosis of erectile dysfunction from a medical practitioner…for all drugs approved by pharmacy board they should only be sold by prescription,” the board’s Pamela Nambwa told Citizen TV.
Because of the sensitivities around this topic most of the men I approached to get their thoughts were uncomfortable talking about their sexual health.