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Drug Offers Relief for Enlarged Prostate

Drug Offers Relief for Enlarged Prostate

Q. I have heard that the FDA has approved a new drug to treat symptoms of prostate enlargement. The trouble is that I didn’t catch the name. If it is less likely to cause sexual difficulties than finasteride or an alpha-blocker like terazosin, I am very interested. Can you tell me more about this new drug, please?

A. The new drug has actually been on the market for several years for another purpose. Cialis (tadalafil) was the third erectile dysfunction medication approved by the FDA (after Viagra and Levitra).

The recent approval is for benign prostatic hypertrophy (BPH). An enlarged prostate can make it difficult for men to urinate. Drugs like finasteride (Proscar) or terazosin (Hytrin) can help with this symptom but both may interfere with sexual performance.

Because Cialis is used to treat erectile dysfunction, it should overcome this problem while easing urinary symptoms due to BPH. Side effects associated with Cialis include headache, indigestion, nasal congestion, back or muscle pain, flushing, cough, stomachache and diarrhea. Changes in hearing or vision are rare but should be reported to a doctor immediately. Always check with a pharmacist to make sure you are not taking any incompatible medicines with Cialis.

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About the Author
Terry Graedon, PhD, is a medical anthropologist and co-host of The People’s Pharmacy radio show, co-author of The People’s Pharmacy syndicated newspaper columns and numerous books, and co-founder of The People’s Pharmacy website. Terry taught in the Duke University School of Nursing and was an adjunct assistant professor in the Department of Anthropology. She is a Fellow of the Society of Applied Anthropology. Terry is one of the country's leading authorities on the science behind folk remedies. .
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