Abstract

http://ssrn.com/abstract=2460204
 


 



The Power of the Little Blue Pill: Innovations and Implications of Life Style Drugs in an Aging Population


Jacob S. LaRiviere


University of Tennessee, Chattanooga

Hendrik Wolff


University of Washington - Department of Economics; Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA)


IZA Discussion Paper No. 8261

Abstract:     
The launch of Viagra in April 1998 led to a historically unprecedented high usage of erectile dysfunction (ED) drugs. We test whether Viagra's introduction significantly influenced outcomes for its target population such as STD rates of older men, as well as its non-target populations, such as divorces, natality, the distribution of the age spread within couples, female STDs and sexual assault rates. We find causal evidence that Viagra's introduction increased Gonorrhea rates in older men by 15-28%. We find no significant evidence of any effects on other variables. We take this as evidence that this lifestyle drug causes significant changes in choices only which affect short term outcomes, while long term planned decisions are unaffected. Overall, we find that the welfare impacts of Viagra with respect to our outcomes of interest are positive and large.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 41

Keywords: prescription drugs, STD, aging population, Viagra, differences-in-differences

JEL Classification: I1, J1, O33, J31

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Date posted: June 28, 2014  

Suggested Citation

LaRiviere, Jacob S. and Wolff, Hendrik, The Power of the Little Blue Pill: Innovations and Implications of Life Style Drugs in an Aging Population. IZA Discussion Paper No. 8261. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=2460204

Contact Information

Jacob S. LaRiviere (Contact Author)
University of Tennessee, Chattanooga ( email )
Department of Philosophy & Religion (#2753)
Chattanooga, TN 37403-2598
United States
Hendrik Wolff
University of Washington - Department of Economics
Box 353330
Seattle, WA 98195-3330
United States
Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA)
P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany
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