It is a form of medication used primarily for treatment of moderate to severe pain. It is formulated from a combination of acetaminophen and hydrocodone. While you may not have heard of its chemical components, you’ve likely heard of this drug: Vicodin. Vicodin, a common prescription pain killer used to treat many forms of physical pain has become household knowledge after its prominence in the hit TV show “House.”
In the show Dr. Gregory House (Hugh Laurie) becomes addicted to the prescription medication which aids in deteriorating his life and destroying many of his friendships. In real life Vicodin, while commonly used, can become a deadly addiction if not carefully and medically monitored.
However, as more research continues to be conducted on Vicodin, more worries have begun to crop up about its use and side effects. One of the more worrisome is the potential for Vicodin’s sexual side effects. Vicodin is primarily a heavy narcotic and as such has often been used as a pain suppressant.
However, pain isn’t the only thing that Vicodin has been known to suppress, and its use can often have related side effects including Abnormally Low Blood Pressure, Drowsiness and Feeling Faint. Now though, studies are looking into the possibility that the narcotic features of Vicodin may play a role in some sexual side effects.
Possible Physical Causes
Recent research has indicated several possible physical causes and medical conditions that could lead to erectile dysfunction (ED), including alcohol and tobacco use, liver or kidney failure, multiple sclerosis, brain or spinal injury, diabetes, hypertension, stroke and radiation therapy to testes, to name a few. Although there is no definitive research linking Vicodin to ED, because of the medication’s genitourinary side effects (which include ureteral spasm and urinary retention), some suspect that protracted use of Vicodin could be a contributing factor to ED. While no conclusive evidence has been found so far, this still causes worry among some researchers.
Though ED is not a fatal condition, it can have severe consequences, especially psychologically. Studies show that good and healthy sex, help many individuals feel lively and happier, leading to a better quality of life. Sexual dysfunctions can lead to anxiety and depression for some people and create the beginning of serious psychological issues. Even though the sexual side effects of Vicodin are still not truly known, the potential consequences warrant careful study and attention.
Some Potential Serious Side Effects
Furthermore, the potential relationship between many of Vicodin’s more serious side effects, and its impact on ED could be significant implications for research on both the drug and the disorder. Vicodin’s more serious side effects include unusual thoughts or behavior, seizures, nausea and problems with urination, along with other genitourinary issues that all may be linked to ED. The relationship between these serious problems and the breakdown of physical mechanisms that lead to ED may be an important link in a better understanding, while at the same time giving consumers some pause before using the drug.
While Vicodin, like other pain killers, has become a commonplace drug to dull pain, more care should be taken in its use. Like many other new and innovative techniques and medicines, there is still much we do not know about Vicodin’s use and its sexual side effects. Until we learn more make sure you speak to medical professionals before using Vicodin or other pain killers.