By Tracy Deloria, CNN • Updated 3rd March 2019
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European regulators are reviewing an antiviral drug that is already used by patients with chlamydia, gonorrhea and herpes.
According to the European Medicines Agency, the EU’s regulatory body, they are looking at adding sildenafil, the generic name for Viagra, to the list of approved drugs to treat a rare bacterial infection that causes an irregular heartbeat.
The review began on February 6 and could take up to six months.
Pfizer announced on Friday that it received a request for a wider use of the antiviral drug. If the drugmaker is found to have run afoul of any European regulations, they may face a penalty of up to 10% of their market share, the company said.
“Based on the efficacy and safety data submitted to EMA and the views of experts of the European Medicines Agency, Pfizer believes that sildenafil tablets, to be used as an adjuvant medication, could be a viable treatment option for serious patients with short-term regional arrhythmia that has produced arrhythmia,” the company said in a statement.
In a release, Pfizer said the request will be discussed at the European Medicine Agency’s Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use, which will make a recommendation.
It is also examining the potential impact on the launch of a new treatment for short-term regional arrhythmia.
Over a year ago, Pfizer launched its Xtandi treatment for short-term regional arrhythmia. Pfizer also sells Rapinyl, a testosterone product for short-term regional arrhythmia.