June 2nd, 2010
10:38 AM ET
By Elizabeth Landau
It's fitting that "PSD502" sounds like a code name, since it relates to a distressing problem most men would prefer not to talk about: premature ejaculation.
Researchers recently presented findings on PSD502, a topical spray medication, at the American Urological Association Annual Meeting. The spray, made by pharmaceutical company Shionogi Pharma, Inc., is in trials among men who suffer from premature ejaculation.
Participants were selected from 70 centers in the United States, Canada and Europe to use either this spray or a placebo spray. They were told to put the spray on the glans penis - the conical structure at the tip of the penis - five minutes before intercourse. Data came from two studies, each of which had more than 500 men.
Researchers found great improvement, with an average time of 3.3 minutes to penetration and climax among those who used PSD502, representing a 5.5-fold increase over the baseline of 36 seconds. Participants who used the placebo had a 1.6-fold gain in time to ejaculate.
The spray itself does not work magic with new materials; in fact, it is a combination of two drugs currently on the market for pain relief: lidocaine and prilocaine.
The company is in the process of applying for approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and could not yet estimate when the product might be available to consumers.
There is currently no FDA-approved treatment for premature ejaculation.
Between 5 and 30 percent of men experience premature ejaculation, studies have found. Risk factors for premature ejaculation include erectile dysfunction, stress, other health problems and use of certain medications such as psychotropic drugs.
Learn more about premature ejaculation from the Mayo Clinic.
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