Tramadol HCL has promise in on-demand use to treat premature ejaculation

J Sex Med. 2008 Jan;5(1):188-93. doi: 10.1111/j.1743-6109.2006.00424.x. Epub 2007 Mar 14.


Introduction: Premature ejaculation (PE) is a worldwide problem without an approved treatment. Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) are widely used "off label" as pharmacotherapeutic agents in the treatment of PE.

Aim: This study investigates Tramadol efficacy for on-demand treatment of PE.

Main outcomes measures: Intravaginal ejaculation latency time (IELT) was used as an objective tool to assess the efficacy of the investigated treatments.

Materials and methods: Single-blind, placebo-controlled, crossover, stopwatch monitored two-period study was conducted, on 60 patients with lifelong PE. PE was defined as IELT of <2 minutes in 80% of intercourse episodes. A total of 25 mg of Tramadol hydrochloride was given to one group (30) prior to intercourse and placebo was supplied for the other group (30) for 8 weeks. Drugs were taken 1-2 hours before sexual activity and sexual intercourse was required at least once per week. After the initial treatment period, the two groups took the alternate medication for another 2 months. The two 8-week treatment periods were separated by 1 week washout period. IELT was timed by a stopwatch at each intercourse and was reported by patients or partners.

Results: The baseline (mean +/- SD) IELT for patients before treatment was 1.17 +/- 0.39 minutes. At the end of the treatment period utilizing the active drug, the mean IELT was increased significantly in patients on Tramadol treatment to 7.37 +/- 2.53 minutes. The same patients on placebo medication had mean IELT of only 2.01 +/- 0.71 minutes. Patients uniformly reported satisfaction with their resulting control over ejaculation.

Conclusions: Tramadol, a drug with a proven safety record as an anti-inflammatory agent, shows promise as a drug for treating rapid ejaculation.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Administration, Oral
  • Adult
  • Coitus*
  • Cross-Over Studies
  • Drug Administration Schedule
  • Ejaculation* / drug effects
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Patient Satisfaction*
  • Serotonin Agents / pharmacology
  • Serotonin Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Sexual Dysfunction, Physiological / drug therapy*
  • Single-Blind Method
  • Tramadol / pharmacology
  • Tramadol / therapeutic use*
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Serotonin Agents
  • Tramadol