'Female Viagra' closer to reality

Posted at: 11/21/2012 8:25 AM
By: Erika Edwards, NBC News

 At least five percent of all women suffer from a disorder in which they can no longer reach the peak of their sexual experiences.

Enter Dr. Sheryl Kingsberg at UH Case Medical Center in Cleveland. She's leading the clinical trial of a potential treatment.

"Tefina" is a nasal gel that delivers a dose of testosterone directly to the brain.

"This allows for a woman who's taking it to have a response within 30 minutes. And it clears out of her system within 24 hours," Dr. Kingsberg explains.

Doctors say there are no hormonal side effects, like hair growth or a deepened voice.

Medications like Viagra to treat erectile dysfunction in men have been on the market for 14 years, generating billions in sales, but no similar drugs are approved to treat women even though nearly half suffer from some form of sexual problem.

"Finally, we're catching up a little and culture is supporting the idea that women deserve treatment," Dr. Kingsberg says. Potentially giving women the lift in libido they so desperately desire.

The clinical trial is expected to last four months.