Health Care Professional Information

Clinical Summary

Viacreme is a topical formulation of menthol and L-arginine in an aqueous base. It is promoted to enhance sexual responsiveness in women by sensitizing the genital area. Cancer patients may experience symptoms of sexual dysfunction that include painful intercourse, loss of libido, and difficulty in maintaining arousal. These problems may be caused by factors such as stress, hormonal changes, and treatment involving surgery, radiation, chemotherapy, or hormone therapy. Application of Viacreme is believed to cause genital warming and increase clitoral sensitivity, although these results may be due to placebo effects.
No clinical trials have been conducted to study the efficacy of Viacreme. Use of Viacreme may cause a sensation of strong genital burning.
This product has not been studied in cancer patients.

Purported Uses
  • Female sexual dysfunction
Constituents
  • Menthol (0.25 - 0.5%)
  • L-arginine
Mechanism of Action

The menthol in Viacreme is thought to facilitate absorption of L-arginine and cause increase in vaginal lubrication. The L-arginine is converted to nitric oxide by nitric oxide synthase that may result in vasodilation of the genital tissues.

Pharmacokinetics

Following application, the active components of Viacreme may be absorbed topically.

Warnings

Sexual dysfunction could be a result of other complex underlying physical, biological, or psychological disorders. Patients should consult and be monitored by a physician when using this product.

Contraindications
  • Hypersensitivity to any of the ingredients
  • Vulvar irritation, atrophy, or infection
Adverse Reactions

Application of Viacreme may cause a sensation of strong genital burning.

Literature Summary and Critique

No human studies have been conducted so far to test the efficacy of Viacreme.

References
  1. Health nexus. http://www.health-nexus.com/viacreme.htm. Accessed December 2, 2010.

Consumer Information

How It Works

Bottom Line: There is no scientific evidence that Viacreme can enhance sexual pleasure in women.

Viacreme is a topical cream that contains menthol and L-arginine. It is being promoted to increase sexual response in women by sensitizing the genital area. Many cancer patients may have painful intercourse and difficulty in maintaining arousal resulting from stress, hormonal changes, cancer treatments, or use of antidepressants. The manufacturer claims application of Viacreme in the clitoral region results in genital warming and increased clitoral sensitivity. The L-arginine increases blood flow to the genital tissue. However, this claim is not supported by clinical studies and the positive results of Viacreme may be due to a placebo effect. This product has not been studied in cancer patients.

Purported Uses

Female Sexual Dysfunction:
This use is not backed by scientific studies.

Research Evidence

No clinical trials have been performed to study the effects of Viacreme in women.

Patient Warnings

Sexual dysfunction could be a result of physical, biological, or psychological disorders. Patients should see a doctor before using this product.

Side Effects

Use of Viacreme may result in a strong genital burning sensation.

Special Point

This product is intended for external use only. Do not use if,

  • you are sensitive to any of the components
  • you have infection or irritation in the genital area
E-mail your questions and comments to aboutherbs@mskcc.org.