Red blooded SA men too bashful to fill ED prescriptions

AUGUST 25, 2015

While more than 4 in 10 South African men over the age of 40 suffer from erectile dysfunction (ED), only 15% seek treatment and even fewer fill their prescriptions.

This is according to Pharma Dynamics – a leading supplier of top-of-the-range generic ED medication in the country.

Tumi Motsei, spokesperson of Pharma Dynamics says there could be a number of reasons why SA men don’t fill their ED prescriptions. These could include the perception around price and that counterfeit ED drugs are readily available online, but it’s more likely that men are just too bashful about the condition.

No red blooded South African man would want to admit – even to a pharmacist – that they are in need of a little extra help in the bedroom.

Since the introduction of generic ED drugs to SA in 2013, which effectively halved the selling price per tablet (compared to that of the brand name equivalent), total category sales have only increased by a meagre 4%. According to Motsei, the under-treatment could largely be as a result of patients getting a prescription, but not filling it at the pharmacy.

“Among the complaints from SA users have been around the limited number of tablets sold per pack, which meant patients had to face the pharmacist (and the queue of possible neighbours and acquaintances) on a weekly basis for their dose of ‘ecstasy’. In some cases men would travel long distances to fill a script, because they don’t want others to know about their condition,” says Motsei.

The good news is that from this August, Pharma Dynamics has introduced a Sildenafil mega-pack to the South African market. Typically only two to four pills are dispensed per pack in this category, per pharmacy visit, but Pharma Dynamics’ mega-pack now gives men the option of 12 pills per pack at an affordable rate.

ED used to be thought of as an old man’s disease, but nowadays the condition is becoming more commonplace among younger men too. About a quarter of men complaining of ED are younger than 40.

Motsei cautions that because about 80% of cases of ED are linked to chronic diseases of lifestyle such as high blood pressure, heart disease or diabetes, which are often caused by lifestyle factors such as obesity, smoking or drinking alcohol – ED itself may be a symptom of other underlying health issues so it is advisable that men suffering from impotence ask their doctor for a thorough physical examination.