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    Female Sexual Dysfunction is a complex condition with biopsychosocial origins. Plants traditionally used as aphrodisiacs may be promising as routes to develop therapeutic options which are lacking. To distinguish the plants commonly used in (AP) on the market in the United States, and to evaluate their ethnobotanical and clinical evidence as a basis for their inclusion. This study is a narrative review of 53 species commonly found in AP on the market in the United States. Most species listed have anecdotal use as aphrodisiacs throughout history; therefore, a systematic search was done for clinical evidence. The primary outcome assessed is the clinical efficacy of plants in the treatment of libido desire disorders. There is little to no evidence from the literature to substantiate claims of plants currently on the market as AP for female libido desire disorders. The biggest problem in the literature is the lack of botanical verification and consistency in material across studies. Any botanical, commercial or otherwise must be tested for chemical markers exhibited by individual species; however, if no markers exist, work must first be done to determine these. Appropriate analytical techniques for this would include high pressure liquid chromatography, and mass spectroscopy. It would also be sufficient to taxonomically authenticate species provided the plant material. Further research should aim to standardize plant material and extraction methods utilized in order to compare studies effectively and allow for reproducibility to draw conclusions. While clear interest into investigation the aphrodisiac potential of plants exists, a translatable in vivo animal model does not. Clinical trials rely on patient reported outcomes to determine efficacy but cost and length of such trials deem a necessity for development of an animal model to first screen botanicals. We suggest development of screening tools utilizing the evident neurobiological underpinnings of FSD as the first step. In general, studies of plants currently used as ingredients for AP are severely lacking, and even so the evidence that exists is weak. Copyright © 2019. Published by Elsevier B.V.


    Hayley Prescott, Ikhlas Khan. Medicinal plants/herbal supplements as female aphrodisiacs: Does any evidence exist to support their inclusion or potential in the treatment of FSD? Journal of ethnopharmacology. 2020 Apr 06;251:112464

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    PMID: 31881322

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