The marketing of a disease: Female sexual dysfunction

Ray Moynihan*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalComment/debate/opinionProfessional

67 Citations (Scopus)


In the shadows of this overmedicalisation, the pharmaceutical industry is meeting unexpected resistance to its attempts to sell women the next big profitable “disease,” female sexual dysfunction. This condition is claimed by enthusiastic proponents to affect 43% of American women,4 yet widespread and growing scientific disagreement exists over both its definition and prevalence. In addition, the meaningful benefits of experimental drugs for women's sexual difficulties are questionable, and the financial conflicts of interest of experts who endorse the notion of a highly prevalent medical condition are extensive. These controversies have been brought into focus by the rejection of Proctor and Gamble's experimental testosterone patch by advisers to the US Food and Drug Administration in December 2004.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)192-194
Number of pages3
JournalBritish Medical Journal
Issue number7484
Publication statusPublished - 22 Jan 2005


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