Mamadou Faye and Firmain Mbadinga, with La Vie, the BBC health programme.
Improving sexual performance has always been a human agenda since the dawn of time. In Côte d’Ivoire, where the team from BBC Africa’s health program La Vie visited, the “chicken market” at Rivera 2 is a place where aphrodisiacs are displayed and sold to help men improve, no less without danger, their moment of coitus.
Like broken down vehicles that need to be “repaired” or given a helping hand to see them go back to full speed, young and old are storming the “garage” of the “chicken market” in Abidjan.
They often go there for this locally made aphrodisiac to enhance their sexual vigor.
Our reporters Firmain Eric Mbadinga and Franck Noudofinin went there to see the enthusiasm around these products often made from decoctions.
On site, many types of bottles and caps are on display. These are homemade aphrodisiacs, in many forms for a clientele that seems increasingly demanding.
You often have to go to the “garage” for an oil change
Rémi (not his real name) is one of them. He knows almost all the products in the specialized shop of Mr. Kobenan, his best supplier.
Despite his young age, he finds it nearly impossible to have good sex without using these locally made aphrodisiacs.
“A man is like a vehicle, at times you have to drain it to have a little more tone,” he says.
“So here, when the need arises, we come to buy the product to strengthen ourselves,” he continues.
But it’s not just Rémi who crosses the gate of the “garage” from time to time.
“These are products that people consume a lot. We have customers who come to buy them individually, there are also some who place orders and who travel everywhere with them”, reveals Mr. Kobenan, the owner of the shop.
For her part, Gaëlle takes care of developing these aphrodisiacs, some of which require the dose to be increased.
“There are people who ask that we make mixtures and that these mixtures are dosed as we are used to saying here,” she says.
It treats and transforms its products before marketing them.
“Here, the bottle is ready, the customer will add either liqueur, tonic or water”, she says.
“I opted for this work to help people who suffer from premature ejaculation or sexual weakness,” says Gaëlle.
But she warns against overdosing.
“It is advisable to take just a small glass so as not to have problems tomorrow, lest when the client consumes, the effect obtained goes beyond that which he was looking for”, she warns.
Danger for an erection lasting more than 6 hours
Many men suffer from erectile dysfunction, which is the persistent or recurring inability to achieve or maintain an erection of the penis sufficient for sexual activity.
However, even if Gaëlle and Kobenan guarantee that these aphrodisiacs made in Côte d’Ivoire are organic and safe, doctors are concerned about their effects when taken in high doses.
Dr Kouakou Kouadjo warns against the misuse of these products.
He cites as an example an 18-year-old patient who was consulted for erectile dysfunction, who does not have a morning erection before the sexual act despite the fact that he sometimes has the desire…
“And it was a patient who abused a substance that even created several symptoms in him; headaches for several days, an erection that lasted more than 6 hours,” he says.
There are also risks of infection.
“You will absorb it and if there are germs in it, you drink it, and it gives you an infection,” he warns.
“Apart from what you are looking for, this is what you will have created in you, and if this germ passes into the blood, it becomes a very serious disease called sepsis which can take you away”, he explains.
As proof, he reveals that he receives more and more patients from all age groups.
“We are receiving more and more patients, sometimes young subjects whose age varies from 18 to 40 or 45 years old,” he says.
What you risk with aphrodisiacs
The specialists are formal that in the event of erectile dysfunction, any use of a stimulating product must respond to a precise dosage but above all come from a medical opinion.
“In general, we tell these people who take these aphrodisiacs that they can just have a drink. Ok, we take a drink but we don’t know the composition of a drink, we don’t know the dosage of that glass”, emphasizes Dr Kouadjo.
“So that’s what leads to these side effects. Basically, aphrodisiacs are vasodilators, which means they open the vessels,” he warns.
“So you see that if you exceed the dosage, the heart can drop in some people as you can have a prolonged erection”, continues the doctor.
This is one of the main reasons for consultation in urology.