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. Health note! Warning Issued on Use of Viagra with Poppers

Health NOTE! Warning Issued on Use of Viagra with Poppers

(This article was taken from the Datalounge News, http://www.datalounge.com)

PHILADELPHIA (Tuesday, May 12, 1998)-- The Philadelphia Gay News reports the manufacturers of Viagra, a new drug prescribed to treat impotence, are warning people not to take it if they are also using poppers to enhance sex.

"Absolutely, Viagra should not be used in conjunction with poppers," said Mariann Caprion, a spokeswoman for Pfizer Inc., which manufactures the new drug. "If poppers and Viagra are taken together, a precipitous drop in blood pressure could occur. We don't want that to happen. We want people to know about this."

Poppers -- amyl nitrate or butyl nitrite -- are inhaled by some people during sex to enhance the experience. They can be purchased in many commercial-sex establishments without a prescription, but their use as a recreational drug is illegal in the United States.

Caprino told PGN she has contacted AIDS and gay activists around the country to warn them about the potential risk. A formal warning in Viagra's packaging insert was not included because of poppers' illegal status, she said.

Next week, she said, Pfizer Inc. plans to mail warnings to 8,000 doctors across the country. "We're doing what we can to get the word out," Caprino said.

AIDS activist Kiyoshi Kuromiya, executive director of Critical Path AIDS Project, also said Viagra should be avoided by PWAs taking protease inhibitors.

"That combination also could hurt people's health, or possibly kill them," Kuroyima said. "Viagra and protease inhibitors use the same metabolic pathways in the liver. If used together, that would cause an overdose, or underdose, of one drug or the other."

Caprino said Pfizer Inc. does not believe Viagra is dangerous when combined with protease inhibitors. "We're aware of that theory," she said. "But our position is that an adverse event from the combination of Viagra and protease inhibitors would be highly unlikely. That's what our biochemist researchers tell us."


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Last updated Sept 19, 2006