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Treatments > Medications Used In MS

Brand Name Chemical Name

(U.S. and Canada) [Suppository]

(al-pross-ta-dill); also called Prostaglandin E1

Primary Usage in MS

Generic Available
Erectile dysfunction No

Alprostadil belongs to a group of medicines called vasodilators, which cause blood vessels to expand, thereby increasing blood flow. It is a semisolid pellet of medication in the form of a suppository. When alprostadil is inserted into the urethra, it produces an erection by increasing blood flow to the penis.

Proper Usage
Alprostadil should never be used as a sexual aid by men who are not impotent. If improperly used, this medication can cause permanent damage to the penis.

Alprostadil is available by prescription and should be used only as directed by your physician.

Do not use more of this medicine or use it more often than it has been prescribed for you. Using too much of this medicine will result in a condition called priapism, in which the erection lasts too long and does not resolve when it should. Permanent damage to the penis can occur if blood flow to the penis is cut off for too long a period of time.

Possible Side Effects
Side effects that you should report to your physician so he or she can adjust the dosage or change the medication: burning or aching during erection.

Rare side effects that require immediate attention: erection continuing for more than four hours. If you cannot be seen immediately by your physician, you should go to the emergency room for prompt treatment.

Medication Index

Other Medications Used to Treat Erectile Dysfunction

About Sexuality

MS and Intimacy
Managing sexual problems, communication tips, resources, and more.

Reprinted with permission from Rosalind C. Kalb (ed.), Multiple Sclerosis: The Questions You Have—The Answers You Need, 3rd Edition. New York: Demos Medical Publishing, Inc., 2004

Last updated January 13, 2005