Arousal oils and creams

Content Written By: Michael Krychman MD, Susan Kellogg PhD CRNP

Zestra, feminine arousal fluid, is a topical botanical formulation of borage seed oil, evening of primrose oil, angelica root extract, coleus forskohlii extract, ascorbyl palmitate, and dlappha tocopherol, and shows promise as a topical formulation for sexual enhancement. It is being promoted to relieve symptoms associated with female sexual arousal dysfunction. The use of Zestra results in increased clitoral and vaginal warmth, heightened arousal, and increased sexual pleasure in selected women. A large multicenter trial involving nearly 200 women showed that Zestra ® benefits both women with and without complaints in sexual satisfaction. Zestra was also noted to be helpful in women on antidepressants such as SSRIs. Caution should be exercised when using this oil when one has dryness or estrogen depleted tissues. Some women report increased irritation or burning after application. The oil should be used as directed, rubbed into the mons area and/or clitoral tissues prior to self stimulation or intercourse.

Some health care advocates are also using this in the sexual rehabilitation of patients who have been treated for cervical cancer and who complain of decreased sensation in the genital pelvic area. More clinical research is need to prove its usefulness however patients subjectively report improved arousal, sensation after radiation or trauma. Larger future clinical trails are in the process of being completed.

KY INTENSE is available from Johnson and Johnson™. It is a product created to increase arousal and female satisfaction. The patent pending gel formula was shown in a clinical study to enhance female sexual satisfaction with up to 75% of female study subjects reported heightened arousal, sexual pleasure and sensitivity. Massaging K-Y® INTENSE™ directly onto the clitoris, as directed, stimulates sensitivity and creates a gentle warming sensation increasing female pleasure during intimacy.

Another common arousal agent is Dream Cream. This nonprescription vaginal cream is marketed as a sexual enhancer. It is odorless, colorless advertised to help stimulate female genital arousal and blood flow. Its primary ingredient is l-arginine. It should be rubbed into the clitoral region to enhance orgasm approximately 10 minutes before sexual intimacy. It does not contain any hormones nor does it contain menthol (which can be irritating to some women). The cream is not FDA-approved nor have there been any rigorous scientific studies to prove its efficacy.

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