Viagra speeds contraceptive pill ok in Japan

Womens Health Wkly. 1999 Mar 15:5-6.


PIP: The oral contraceptive pill has been available to most women around the world for almost 4 decades. However, oral contraception has still not been approved in Japan, and the condom is the most commonly used contraceptive method in the country. 20% of all pregnancies end in induced abortion. The Japanese government has failed to approve the use of oral contraceptives, citing fears about the destruction of the nation's morals and environmental harm from the hormones. However, Viagra, an impotence drug, was approved in late January 1999, after only 6 months of deliberation. Women's groups subsequently accused the government of being sexist against women. The government committee studying the safety of the pill finished its 9-year deliberation, and concluded that there was no further reason to withhold approval, although it did not actually approve oral contraception. The committee, expected to meet again in June, said that it first wants to prepare guidelines for physicians and users, such as teaching people to use condoms to prevent the spread of HIV/AIDS. In contrast, Viagra was approved so fast that the guidelines are still being worked out. If the committee recommends approval in June 1999, government approval is likely with a month, and the pill will begin to be available in the fall.

MeSH terms

  • Asia
  • Asia, Eastern
  • Biology
  • Consumer Product Safety*
  • Contraception
  • Contraceptives, Oral*
  • Developed Countries
  • Disease
  • Family Planning Services
  • Genitalia
  • Genitalia, Male*
  • Government*
  • Interpersonal Relations*
  • Japan
  • Legislation as Topic
  • Pharmaceutical Preparations*
  • Physiology
  • Politics*
  • Therapeutics
  • Urogenital System
  • Vascular Diseases*


  • Contraceptives, Oral
  • Pharmaceutical Preparations