New Drug Reviews

Flibanserin (Addyi) for Hypoactive Sexual Desire Disorder in Premenopausal Women


Am Fam Physician. 2016 May 15;93(10):826-828.

Flibanserin (Addyi) is labeled for the treatment of acquired, generalized hypoactive sexual desire disorder (HSDD) in premenopausal women. It is a nonhormonal medication that affects serotonin receptors to increase libido.1

View/Print Table

DrugDosageDose formCost*

Flibanserin (Addyi)

100 mg per day at bedtime

100-mg tablet


*—Estimated retail price of one month's treatment based on information obtained at (accessed April 1, 2016).

DrugDosageDose formCost*

Flibanserin (Addyi)

100 mg per day at bedtime

100-mg tablet


*—Estimated retail price of one month's treatment based on information obtained at (accessed April 1, 2016).


The main risks of flibanserin are hypotension (2%) and syncope (0.4%), which are more likely to occur in patients who have also ingested alcohol. For this reason, women should not drink alcohol when taking flibanserin; about one in six persons taking this combination will experience clinically significant hypotension and syncope.1 Flibanserin should not be taken by women with hepatic impairment or women who are also taking moderate or strong cytochrome P450 3A4 inhibitors such as azole antifungals or protease inhibitors, which may increase serum levels.2 Flibanserin should be taken at night because adverse effects are more prominent when it is taken in the morning. Pregnancy and breastfeeding should be avoided while taking flibanserin, because its effects on humans are not known.2


Dizziness (11.4%), somnolence (11.2%), nausea (10.4%), fatigue (9.2%), insomnia (4.9%), and dry mouth (2.4%) are reported with flibanserin but are less common when it is taken at bedtime. About one in eight patients will discontinue treatment because of adverse effects.1


Flibanserin has been evaluated in three randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled studies of 2,375 premenopausal women with acquired, generalized HSDD, defined as low sexual desire causing marked distress or interpersonal difficulties.

Address correspondence to Jeffrey Tingen, PharmD, MBA, at Reprints are not available from the authors.

Author disclosure: No relevant financial affiliations.


show all references

1. FDA briefing document. Joint meeting of the Bone, Reproductive and Urologic Drugs Advisory Committee (BRUDAC) and the Drug Safety and Risk Management (DSaRM) Advisory Committee. June 4, 2015 NDA 022526: flibanserin. Accessed January 2, 2016....

2. Dailymed. Drug label information: Addyi–flibanserin tablet, film coated. Accessed January 7, 2016.

3. Sprout Pharmaceuticals. Addyi risk evaluation and mitigation strategy (REMS). Accessed January 2, 2016.

4. McCartney M. Flibanserin for low sexual desire is not feminism. BMJ. 2015;351:h5650.

STEPS new drug reviews cover Safety, Tolerability, Effectiveness, Price, and Simplicity. Each independent review is provided by authors who have no financial association with the drug manufacturer.

This series is coordinated by Allen F. Shaughnessy, PharmD, MMedEd, Contributing Editor.

A collection of STEPS published in AFP is available at



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