By Sam Sanare

Therapeutic agents for sexual enhancement can largely be grouped into divisions.

1. Hormonal agents like butea superba, tongkat ali, testosterone patches, and anabolic injections. Without doubt, they work on libido. As reverse evidence, chemical castration lowers testosterone only, and thus takes the danger out of sexual offenders.

2. Chemical phosphodiesterase inhibitors like Pfizer’s Blue, or Lilly’s Beige and Bayer’s Beige. Alprostadil injections also belong into this group. And high dosages of butea superba also exhibit phosphodiesterase inhibition.​

3. Dopaminergic drugs used in the treatment of Parkinson’s. One dopaminergic drug, apomorphine (Uprima) even received official approval.

When Uprima was launched in Europe as the first medical treatment for sexual dysfunction after Pfizer’s Blue, it was expected that it could repeat that one’s success. It did not. Which doesn’t mean that it would be an entirely useless drug.

Apomorphine, as a dopaminergic drug, stimulates dopamine receptors. And dopaminergics are a blessing. If you know how to take them, and what to expect.

Unlike sildenafil citrate or hormonal enhancers like butea superba, apomorphine and other dopaminergics exert their pro-sexual effect not upon the erectile organ but upon the brain. Apomorphine provokes erections not by interfering with the plumbing of male sexual function (speak: blood supply to the penis), but the wiring necessary for arousal.

That Pfizer’s Blue only affects the plumbing, puts clear limits to its potential as a lifestyle drug. The medication will do little for men whose plumbing doesn’t leak. On the other hand, a good shot of additional desire can be a welcome life enhancement for many people with whom there is nothing wrong physically but who just feel bored with their everyday life. For them, apomorphine can be an enrichment, albeit on a limited scale.

While apomorphine clearly is a pleasure drug (if taken at dosages below the nausea level), this is about all it has in common with its more famous colleague in name, morphine. Sure, apomorphine can be produced from morphine. But its pharmacological effects are completely different. Morphine is a sedative agent, while apomorphine is a stimulant.

Apomorphine primarily works as a dopamine agonist. Like most dopamine agonists, apomorphine is useful in the management of Parkinson’s Disease (PD), a condition characterized by the loss of dopamine-producing neurons, or a decreased function of such neurons. Either way, a dopamine deficiency is the result, leading to severe motor function disturbance.

Apomorphine is a D1 receptor-specific dopamine agonist that makes it different from mostly ergot-derived dopamine agonists, which usually target D2 dopamine receptors, e.g. pergolide and bromocriptine. D3 and D4 dopamine receptors are less often targeted in the management of Parkinson’s Disease.

It has long been documented that Parkinson’s Disease medications have sexuality-enhancing side effects. It has to be noted that the sexuality-enhancing side effects hold true for many but not all dopamine-enhancing Parkinson’s medications. Whether or not a dopamine agonist enhances sexual functions seems to depend primarily on the dopamine receptor sites it targets.