Let's talk about sex! Or rather premature ejaculation. All too often a no-go topic for men, PE is the most common male sexual problem. Our doctor talks us through what you need to know.
Premature ejaculation is usually said to happen when a man reaches sexual climax and ejaculation occurs within a timeframe of two minutes. However, in severe cases this can occur over a much shorter time period such as in foreplay. Either way, it can prove extremely frustrating for both parties.
Up to now, the mainstay of therapy was via the use of psychosexual therapy from an appropriately trained and accredited counsellor. This treatment is based on the groundbreaking work of Masters & Johnson in the USA in the 1950s and 60s (which was the subject of a recent television series) and which was very controversial at the time.
More recently, use has been made of the local anaesthetic cream EMLA™. While this was developed for use to anaesthetise the skin prior to undergoing a procedure (such as having blood taken especially in the case of young patients), it has also been used in what is termed an ‘off licence‘ manner. This means that while is it licensed primarily for a specific purpose, the fact that it can have other therapeutic uses does not exclude it being used for these despite the fact it's not licensed for these other purposes. This occurs in other areas of medicine and therapeutics and is a recognised, legitimate use of medicines.
In 2014 a new medication (Priligy) became available, used as a specific treatment for this problem. An interesting fact about this medicine is that it's related to a group of medicines called SSRIs, used in the treatment of depression. It came to light that this group of medicines can have an effect on delaying ejaculation so it's no surprise that they're used to do exactly that when premature ejaculation is a problem. Indeed, another member of the SSRI group of medicines (Fluoxetine brand name Prozac) has been used in an ‘off licence’ manner for PE. It's important to note that the use of this medicine is not advised where there is a history of psychiatric illnesses such as schizophrenia or bipolar disorder. This is due to potential for drug interaction between Priligy and other medicines used to treat these medical conditions, possibly resulting in the destabilisation of schizophrenia and mood alteration with bipolar disorder.
If you are concerned that you might suffer from Premature Ejaculation we recommend you talk to your local GP or you can apply for treatment using our discreet online questionnaire.