home
RSS
May 19th, 2010
02:11 PM ET

Viagra associated with hearing loss

by Madison Park
CNNhealth.com writer/producer

Oh Viagra.

Sure, Pfizer’s wonder pill has side effects such as headaches, facial flushing, upset stomach, erections lasting more than four hours, bluish or sudden loss of vision.  There’s one more risk to the pill that grants erections: Hearing loss.

Research published this week in Archives of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery showed an association between long-term hearing loss and Viagra.

This side effect is already acknowledged by Viagra - especially after the U.S. Food and Drug Administration forced this labeling changes for oral erectile dysfunction medicines known as PDE5 inhibitors in 2007.

The research conducted at the University of Alabama at Birmingham looked into the data based on 11,525 men.  Men who self-reported hearing problems were twice more likely to indicate that they used erectile dysfunction medication.

While it’s difficult to establish cause and effect in an observational study, these findings  indicate that the FDA labeling was warranted, said study author Gerald McGwin, a professor of epidemiology at the UAB School of Public Health, in a taped news release.

The association was present for long-term hearing loss after using Viagra, and to a lesser extent other ED drugs such as Cialis and Levitra.  The sample sizes for the two latter drugs were smaller.

Since Viagra increases blood flow to the penis, perhaps the drug increases blood flow to the ear causing damage, McGwin hypothesized.

For more facts about Viagra

Editor's Note: Medical news is a popular but sensitive subject rooted in science. We receive many comments on this blog each day; not all are posted. Our hope is that much will be learned from the sharing of useful information and personal experiences based on the medical and health topics of the blog. We encourage you to focus your comments on those medical and health topics and we appreciate your input. Thank you for your participation.


soundoff (201 Responses)
  1. John

    Been taking Viagra the past ten years..I've never had any problems
    with my hearing..Hearing is just as good now as ten years ago..I
    never believe 70 % of these so-called studies anyway..

    May 20, 2010 at 08:54 | Report abuse | Reply
  2. jay

    Mom was right! You muck with it not only will you possibly go blind (see their warning), but now you can go deaf too!

    May 20, 2010 at 08:54 | Report abuse | Reply
  3. JW

    Let us see, what will men trade for a hard on. Their money, no problem. Their sight, their hearing? I like sex but I can not give up or damage my sight or hearing for a four hour hard on.

    What a bunch of fools we men are.

    May 20, 2010 at 08:57 | Report abuse | Reply
  4. sharon

    If the sex is good, what do you need to hear? Perhaps, moderation is the key. Only take Viagra on Fridays, for the week-end, then it's back to business, come Monday, Yeah you heard right Cassanova get your adz back to the office! See you on Friday, Sat. and Sunday. LOL

    May 20, 2010 at 09:12 | Report abuse | Reply
  5. Bob

    Wow, the number of anti-drug, anti-erection comments is astounding. And the lack of scientific eduction they indicate.

    Guess what folks-mankind had been using "drugs" since the beginning. You people probably think it's "cool" and "so in touch with their heritage" for Indians to take peyote to find their god-spirit, or whatever nonsense. (Not that I care...if it works for them, and that's their belief system, it's really none of my business. I just don't elevate that behaviour to saintliness).

    Tell you what-let me take the drugs I want to take, let me assess the risks I'm willing to take. Your doctor (surprise) is most often a good person, trying to help people. Yea, there are some who are less than great, but most want to see you get better, and the primary guide they have is YOU, and how YOU feel.

    Hey Dogs Rule...you think Viagra is disgusting? So, would YOU be able to deny the STRONGEST BIOLOGICAL URGE YOU HAVE, if there was a way for you to express it? Lets take away your ability to have orgasms at age 25, but NOT take away being aroused all the time. Would you think a little blue pill would be so disgusting then?

    Drugs are just tools, like any other tool. It's not the tool that's good or bad, but thinking that makes them so. It's users's/wielder's ACTIONS that are good/bad, effective/ineffective, NOT THE TOOL.

    May 20, 2010 at 09:15 | Report abuse | Reply
  6. Drisc

    I work in an ENT department. Since Viagra came out, we've had a large number of men lose their hearing. Our surgeons are now having to ask if they use the medication. I don't know if correlation equals causality, but there's a stark increase.

    May 20, 2010 at 09:25 | Report abuse | Reply
  7. i dont like it

    Viagra makes my head stuffy and I can't breath when I take it. and that is only a 1/2 of a pill. And it is really expensive through my Kaiser plan. VERY expensive.

    May 20, 2010 at 09:29 | Report abuse | Reply
  8. Dibbels

    This is an association, not a cause. It could be something as simple as men who take Viagra are more likely to do things that cause hearing damage, such as go to rock concerts, crank the IPod while at the gym, have woman scream orgasms in their ears, etc.

    May 20, 2010 at 09:33 | Report abuse | Reply
  9. trixen

    ok, so we get more sex and we can't hear our wives when they tell us to take out the trash... I'm still waiting for the bad part.

    May 20, 2010 at 09:44 | Report abuse | Reply
  10. Joseph

    If a man needs Viagra etc to help get it up, then he needs more than a pill. Most of this stuff is pushed on us by the pharmaceutics companies. If a man gets an erection for more than four hours, I think he should call CNN. Pills are not the answer to everything, besides they all seem to come with a side effect of one kind or another. Be a man and do it all on your own without any pill.

    May 20, 2010 at 09:44 | Report abuse | Reply
  11. doug

    Maybe that's how Rush lost his hearing.

    May 20, 2010 at 09:45 | Report abuse | Reply
  12. LMAO

    They should post more articles like this...I've never laughed so hard reading all these comments! You guys are hilarious!

    May 20, 2010 at 09:48 | Report abuse | Reply
  13. Sarker

    I can relate to this. I'm 30yrs old and my Dr. prescribed this to me since I was taking Lexapro after I broke up with my ex. In case I had any side effects from the anti-depresant. I really like this stuff it makes you harder than a rock and immune to losing wood when you need to deliver. I was like the coolest porn star on earth with this stuff. Woman also commented that I was big more frequently. This stuff turns you into a raging bull. But yes it does cause some popping effects in your ears. It lasts for about four hours and gives you the ability to get an erection at will during that time.

    May 20, 2010 at 09:49 | Report abuse | Reply
  14. Mark

    Mary,

    ED drugs are NOT ruled out for men with high blood pressure, or on high blood pressure medication!!! Only if you are taking nitro for angina ... Normal high blood pressure meds are not a problem. Check with you doctor.

    May 20, 2010 at 09:56 | Report abuse | Reply
  15. Mad Doc

    Then keep going! Don't stop! Then step back and observe the smoke of your job! Ay-yi-y-yi!

    May 20, 2010 at 09:59 | Report abuse | Reply
  16. rob

    And the word most likely not to be heard?? NO lol

    May 20, 2010 at 10:19 | Report abuse | Reply
  17. Joe D

    maybe it's not hearing loss–just distraction by other sensations.

    May 20, 2010 at 10:23 | Report abuse | Reply
  18. ishite1

    Who cares about hearing loss?? Would rather have my erection than hear anything. Afterall even the deaf do it.

    May 20, 2010 at 10:25 | Report abuse | Reply
  19. Trauma1 RN

    Now I've HEARD everything! In the trauma center, we thought it was caused by patients arriving with MI symptoms just not wanting to confess to using the drug! As I always say in my job... you can't make this crap up people!!

    May 20, 2010 at 10:26 | Report abuse | Reply
  20. ellen

    I was working at Georgetown U in 1998 when Pfizer came in, describing the research being foisted upon...
    There was such a big push to get these male drugs through. If it were a pill for women, well you know what would have happened.
    Of course they are dangerous and the tissue which is affected in the genitals resembles the epithelial tissue in the heart, so ED is a harbinger of heart problems.
    When male physicians and researchers will learn to protect the patient and not keep them as subjects, we all can go home.
    And not to the stupid twin bathtubs clogging up the television screen in prime time.
    No male is going to stay away from something like a pill, and no pharmaceutical company is ever going to give up this cash cow. Or bull.

    May 20, 2010 at 10:30 | Report abuse | Reply
  21. Ronnie Beth Herbst

    ...and we women are saying:

    Men don't listen to us anyway, so this is news that they would listen to us during sex?!?!?

    May 20, 2010 at 10:33 | Report abuse | Reply
  22. Evans

    Maybe the effects of ED drugs are correlational; the guys weren't good listeners anyway.

    May 20, 2010 at 10:42 | Report abuse | Reply
  23. Nick

    I agree with a couple people who said it was the perfect situation... Still get to get some lovin, but you don't have to listen to any nagging later...

    May 20, 2010 at 10:46 | Report abuse | Reply
  24. Thesuntoucher

    This is the funniest thread I have ever read. Talk about taking lemons and making lemonade. LOL... Truely a wonder drug...sign me up

    May 20, 2010 at 10:51 | Report abuse | Reply
  25. vickie

    A blind and deaf man with a hard on, make him a mute and rich and he'd be perfect......

    May 20, 2010 at 10:54 | Report abuse | Reply
  26. GG2388

    @david
    "While it’s difficult to establish cause and effect in an observational study..." - Maybe you should read the article a little more carefully.

    May 20, 2010 at 10:56 | Report abuse | Reply
  27. bill dyszel

    The data's pretty shaky, given that ED and hearing loss both correlate with age.

    But the jokes are too good to pass up.

    May 20, 2010 at 10:56 | Report abuse | Reply
  28. kksharma

    I have not heard what has been stated today by Dr. Gupta,well under this condition,will have to ask and consult my doctors about this and then have to decide regarding the use of this drug,if he says that hearing will be affected-then ofcourse one should STOP USE of this medecine. But till now I have not felt any such position-what has been stated.
    Tks.

    May 20, 2010 at 10:59 | Report abuse | Reply
  29. Mama Bear

    These postings just demonstrate why more women are choosing women. . . .

    May 20, 2010 at 11:00 | Report abuse | Reply
  30. Patrick

    This is no medical breakthrough. Hostorically, men w/ boners don't hear anything.

    May 20, 2010 at 11:02 | Report abuse | Reply
  31. John D

    The best combination is take Cialis in the morning, then just a small piece of viagar 1/2 hour or so before and you're good to go all night. You just can't really eat on these drugs or it will reduce or eliminate the effects.

    May 20, 2010 at 11:03 | Report abuse | Reply
  32. Austin TX

    now if there was only a side effect to make your woman's cooking better we'd be all set

    May 20, 2010 at 11:11 | Report abuse | Reply
  33. Katie

    Is anyone surprised that a man would eagerly take a pill in order to have sex? Even if it meant permanent damage to some other part of his body?

    That said, this article doesn't come near to proving anything. Men who take viagra probably also complain of arthritis pain, sore muscles, bad backs, hair loss, or changes in urination. Might have something to do with their ages...

    May 20, 2010 at 11:16 | Report abuse | Reply
  34. larry lee

    As if you want to listen to her anyway

    May 20, 2010 at 11:25 | Report abuse | Reply
  35. Dan

    I'm not so sure that Viagra is damaging people's hearing. It's more likely that once you've taken it your hearing becomes extremely selective as you are now very focused on something else.

    May 20, 2010 at 11:31 | Report abuse | Reply
  36. Trauma1 RN

    I gotta agree with some of you that this has been the highlight of my day! I keep coming back to read the jokes! You guys are too funny! My hubby loved your comments and agreed with many of them. Perhaps that's why they call me Nurse Ratchet?????? Peace be with us ladies, it doesn't get any better than this!

    May 20, 2010 at 11:57 | Report abuse | Reply
  37. Steve G

    Who are these stupid guys that are sticking the pills in their ears instead of swallowing them? That would just make them hardheaded!

    May 20, 2010 at 12:50 | Report abuse | Reply
  38. DaHound

    Mom used to say, 'Stop that or you'll go Blind!" I asked if I could do it until I needed glasses. Can I use Cialis until I get tinitis?

    May 20, 2010 at 13:22 | Report abuse | Reply
  39. marianna

    There has been an association between using Viagra and sudden decrease in hearing and even hearing loss as well as long term hearing loss. http://www.healthialist.com

    May 20, 2010 at 14:04 | Report abuse | Reply
  40. Lori RN Florida

    When this pill first came out I was working for a Urology practice,We were deluged for it.Guys in their 90's wanted it. This is a pill for men with erectile problems. It is NOT for healthy males trying to make the olympic copulation team. The side effects are nasty and some are just now becomming known.,I realize I am talking to a wall with no ears when it comes to guys wanting to get their rocks off, but from a medical point of view this is not a recreational drug and should not be taken for fun. Hear me?

    May 20, 2010 at 14:09 | Report abuse | Reply
  41. lawrence

    i have a hearing loss but it wasn't fromtaking those stupid pills. I never have and damn sure never will.

    May 20, 2010 at 14:13 | Report abuse | Reply
  42. Mitch

    A female's worst nightmare, he's very aroused and he can't hear her say No!

    May 20, 2010 at 14:30 | Report abuse | Reply
  43. Hank Vernon

    Sex is over rated. I prefer no sex while having 20-20 vision and good hearing over great sex but with the loss of hearing and vision.

    People should not believe that the kind of sex hollywood puts in front of us is real. It isn't. When you are over 55, the sex is going downhill. Accept it. Your over-all health is fare more important.

    May 20, 2010 at 14:47 | Report abuse | Reply
  44. TakeCialis

    These comments are great! Seriously though, Cialis is the way to go. Least amount of side effects, you can still get off when you want to, and for me, it only takes 1/4 of a egg shaped pill. My doctor prescribed it bc I have a tendency to get too over worked and then explode. Guess I shouldn't have married such a gorgeous woman! Anyway, since taking it I'm back to my old self and half the time I don't even need anything anymore. it restored confidence and ability, so in my mind it did what it was promised to do. I would say that the vascular disease is the cause of hearing loss and ED, not the pill itself. Then again, I'm not a doctor so I don't KNOW this as fact.

    May 20, 2010 at 16:26 | Report abuse | Reply
  45. Art

    Hearing loss? Most men start to lose hearing as soon as they say I DO.

    May 20, 2010 at 18:53 | Report abuse | Reply
  46. Art

    WHY?

    May 20, 2010 at 18:56 | Report abuse | Reply
  47. Sbeth

    Uh, I don't think the fellas who use the stuff are concerned about the hearing. That is the top part of the body.

    May 20, 2010 at 19:18 | Report abuse | Reply
  48. chica007

    I'll just write him nagging notes! It doesnt say anything about ruining their eyesight does it??? LOL

    May 20, 2010 at 21:45 | Report abuse | Reply
  49. Bill

    I'm completely deaf. Is it possible that if I use Viagra now I could become just "Hard" of hearing?

    May 27, 2010 at 11:15 | Report abuse | Reply
  50. Jim Shipp

    These post are some of the most ignorant statements that I have ever read. It is not a joke to lose your hearing. What if it happens to you?

    May 27, 2010 at 13:04 | Report abuse | Reply
1 2 3 4 5

Post a comment


 

CNN welcomes a lively and courteous discussion as long as you follow the Rules of Conduct set forth in our Terms of Service. Comments are not pre-screened before they post. You agree that anything you post may be used, along with your name and profile picture, in accordance with our Privacy Policy and the license you have granted pursuant to our Terms of Service.

Advertisement
About this blog

Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.