The erectile dysfunction drug sildenafil may reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease, Elizabeth Tracey reports


Sildenafil is used by men with erectile dysfunction, with a recent study examining medical records of men who used it finding they also developed Alzheimer’s disease less often. This is called an observational study, and it only can find an association at best. Geriatrics expert Lolita Nidadavolu at Johns Hopkins, who cowrote an editorial on the study, says the researchers did their best with the data. 

Nidadavolu: Looking at whether these erectile dysfunction drugs can prevent the incidence of dementia, this study does try to answer some of the limitations from those other publications. However it still is this large observational study and really all we can say is these are associations. We're finding the big next step to really come out of this is doing a randomized control trial that would be the real gold standard to answer this question once and for all.    :29

For now Nidadavolu does not recommend using sildenafil to reduce one’s risk for Alzheimer’s disease. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.