Sildenafil sold as the brand name Viagra by Pfizer is a pill used to treat erectile dysfunction. This drug was launched in the US in the year 1998 and made it really big with sales over 1.5 billion in in 2016. The bad news for Pfizer is that Viagra’s patent is going to expire in April 2020, resulting in a spike of its generic versions by other manufacturers, giving them very stiff competition in the markets.
A deal was negotiated 4 years back that granted Teva Pharmaceuticals USA to start selling a generic version of Viagra by Dec 11, 2017 and Pfizer is competing with their tiny white pill with their little blue pill at half the current $65.
The milestones over the years
Viagra made ED talkable
Let’s go back in time, prior to Viagra’s arrival; hearing erectile dysfunction on the television casually meant taking a horse to the emergency department. But there came a sea of change with the introduction of Viagra, especially in the year when the Food and Drug Administration allowed direct to consumer advertising in the year 1997. All of a sudden ED went from something that was rarely discussed even between the doctors and patients to something that became hard to miss while watching television on a day to day basis.
A study regarding the same, led by Elizabeth Selvin, PhD, MPH from The John Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health was published in the American Journal of Medicine, which stated that the better awareness and the greater availability of a medication for ED has helped approx. 18 million men in the US over 20 years of age in combating this issue.
It has also made it easier for people to discuss about sexual health issues in general. As we all know, sexual health is bound with physical, emotional and mental health, Viagra has helped bring about a great difference for someone who had exhausted all their options to address the issue of ED.
Has Viagra become cheap now after patent expiry?
The video above explains how the generic version of sildenafil will make it more accessible, easier and affordable to the patients. But truth is that Pfizer has only lost its exclusivity of the patent to Teva and not to other manufacturers as of now and it looks likely that there will be just 2 legitimate companies that will be allowed to legally market "Sildenafil" in the US until 2020. This means that Gneeic Viagra still will cost around $30 and will not be truly cheap.
But in 2020, when the patent expires, dozens of companies will be allowed to market the drug in the US and when that happens, the price of Viagra will fall lower than $5 in all likelihood.
The Viagra Evolution Timeline & Emergence of Generic Viagra
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