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Taking Viagra Lowers Risk of Alzheimer's by up to 69%

Frankie Golding

Published 
| Last updated 

Taking Viagra Lowers Risk of Alzheimer's by up to 69%

Yes, you heard that correctly! According to scientists, Viagra has the unexpected health benefit of reducing the risk of Alzheimer's disease by over two-thirds.  

This groundbreaking discovery comes after years of searching for an effective treatment for the progressive illness that affects millions of people over the world.  

The beginnings of this discovery started in the Cleveland Clinic, where researchers used a large gene-mapping network to determine if any of the 1,600 FDA approved drugs they tested could prove effective in treating Alzheimer's.  

Researchers scored the drugs on their effectiveness and were surprised to find that Viagra (also known as Sildenafil) ‘shot-up’ to the top of the leaderboard, proving to be the most effective amongst ‘stiff’ competition. 

Research to find effective treatment for those suffering from Alzheimer's disease has been going on for decades. Credit: Alamy
Research to find effective treatment for those suffering from Alzheimer's disease has been going on for decades. Credit: Alamy

Dr Feixiong Cheng of the Cleveland Clinic said to the New York Post: "Sildenafil, which has been shown to significantly improve cognition and memory in preclinical models, presented as the best drug candidate.” 

Researchers then analysed a medical database involving over seven million people over a period of 6 years and found evidence that people using Sildenafil were 69 percent less likely to develop Alzheimer’s than those not using the drug. 

What a result, eh? 

It’s not quite time to celebrate, however, as there is still a lot more research to be done.  

On the future of Viagra, Dr Cheng said: "Because our findings only establish an association between sildenafil use and reduced incidence of Alzheimer's disease, we are now planning a mechanistic trial and a phase two randomised clinical trial to test causality and confirm Sildenafil's clinical benefits for Alzheimer's patients." 

Further research is still needed, but it has been found that Viagra can significantly reduce the chances of a person developing Alzheimer's. Credit: Alamy
Further research is still needed, but it has been found that Viagra can significantly reduce the chances of a person developing Alzheimer's. Credit: Alamy

It might also surprise people to know that Viagra has being used for things 'non-erection' related for years.

For instance, Viagra was originally designed to treat heart disease - but it was soon discovered it could quickly increase blood flow to the penis, thus causing erections.  

Scientific research has further shown that it can be useful in treating Pulmonary hypertension (when high blood pressure affects the arteries of the lungs) as well as Raynaud’s phenomenon - where your blood circulation is affected by coldness or stress.  

It also treats mountain sickness, according to Science Daily, by “reducing pulmonary at high altitude” and “improving the ability to exercise in low-oxygen conditions.” 

Featured Image Credit: Alamy

Topics: Health, Science

Frankie Golding
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