Would sildenafil work to reduce Alzheimer’s disease risk in women? Elizabeth Tracey reports


Sildenafil, taken for erectile dysfunction, seems to have helped reduce Alzheimer’s disease risk in men. Would the drug have the same impact on women, and what might the side effects look like? Lolita Nidadavolu, a geriatrics expert at Johns Hopkins and coauthor of an editorial on the study, says such a study is clearly needed.

Nidadavolu: This study was mainly looking at men. It was looking at much younger men also. Previous studies looked at the disease of pulmonary arterial hypertension which is mostly a female predominant disease and I think we need to combine the two populations and really take a look at a mixed population where there aren't other comorbid conditions that are confounding some of the results, and put our money down and see what's happening with that.   :27

Nidadavolu notes that this study is observational, so can only show an association. A clinical trial would answer the question of whether and how well sildenafil works in this capacity. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.