Procter & Gamble Co. developing patch to restore libido in post-menopausal women

Monday, February 11th 2002, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

MASON, Ohio (AP) _ Procter & Gamble Co. is developing a testosterone patch it says could restore the sex drive in post-menopausal women.

The Cincinnati company will invest several hundred million dollars developing the patch, called Intrinsa, but it won't be available for several years.

Nearly transparent and the size of an egg, the patch is worn just below the navel and changed about twice weekly.

``I think it's a wonderful idea, but I also think that expectations need to be realistic,'' said Molly Katz, a gynecologist whose practice will be participating in the trials.

``It isn't going to fix everybody,'' she said. ``Unless you have that satisfactory relationship, it's not going to make that much difference.''

Large-scale testing of the patch in volunteers starts this month, one of the last stages before U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval.

While generally associated with the male sex drive, testosterone also is needed for the female response. Studies have shown that levels of the hormone fall after menopause.

Procter & Gamble, which licensed the testosterone patch technology from Watson Pharmaceuticals, faces competition from drug makers testing alternatives such as battery-operated devices, pills, creams and other patches.