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04/19/2018 03:22 pm ET

Doctor Dismisses British Man's Claims That Medication Made Him Gay

Still, he said, "It’s not up to any of us to judge or belittle anyone’s coming out journey."

A British doctor questioned a 23-year-old man’s claims that prescription medication turned him gay, but encouraged others to support his coming out.

Scott Purdy made headlines in a number of British tabloids this week, claiming that he began developing an attraction to other men just days after he began taking pregabalin ― better known by its Pfizer brand name, Lyrica ― in February after experiencing negative side effects from other medications he’d been taking since breaking his foot in 2012.

“I noticed my libido for women had gone and I was wanting male attention,” Purdy, who had a girlfriend at the time, told the Daily Mirror on Monday. “I stopped taking it for a few weeks and that desire for men just left. But I’m on it now; I’m very happy. I want to keep on taking it because it makes me feel happy about my sexuality. It’s made me feel very open. It’s liberating.” 

When Purdy repeated his claim Wednesday on “This Morning,” a British news program, saying the drug had changed his sexuality, the show’s resident doctor Dr. Ranj Singh wasn’t having it.

Singh, who identifies as gay, acknowledged that drugs like Lyrica could prompt some “alteration in sexual function,” specifically lowering one’s sex drive, as a side effect. Still, he said it was medically impossible for the painkiller to impact a person’s sexuality like Purdy claimed. 

“First and foremost, I think it’s great that you’re happy, and whatever it takes for you to be happy is good for you,” he told Purdy. “What it probably does is allow you to be able to express what was already there.”

He reiterated that stance in a series of Wednesday tweets.  

“All it has done,” he told Purdy on Wednesday, “is allowed you to be your true self.” 

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