The study of more than 5 million insured adults from 1998 to 2002 found the fastest-growing segments of Viagra users was men aged 18 to 55 years.


The number of men under 45 using the drug tripled during this time, the company reported in the International Journal of Impotence Research.



And fewer of these men are using Viagra because they need to for some medical reason. “These findings suggest increased use of Viagra as an enhancement or recreational agent,” the company said in a statement.



However, most users are over 56.



The drug, known generically as sildenafil, acts by increasing blood flow. It can help men made impotent by diabetes, heart disease and other conditions.



Its use increased from 0.8 percent of the population surveyed in 1998 to 1.4 percent in 2002, a rise of 84 percent.



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