Exploring the use of Viagra in place of animal and plant potency products in traditional Chinese medicine
Recently, conservationists have debated whether consumers of animal and plant potency products used to treat erectile dysfunction (ED) in traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) might be switching to Viagra, consequently consuming fewer of these animals and plants. To address this question, a survey examined the medical decisions of male consumers of TCM in Hong Kong who were over the age of 50. As predicted, these consumers reported selectively switching to Western medicines to treat ED, but not to treat other health ailments. These findings provide support for the possibility that Viagra may have conservation benefits for certain species.(Published Online January 9 2006)
(Received August 17 2004)
(Accepted August 24 2005)
Key Words: animal potency products; erectile dysfunction; threatened species; trade; traditional Chinese medicine; Viagra.
c1 Correspondence: Dr William von Hippel e-mail: [email protected]