Just like Cialis or Levitra, Viagra is also used to treat erectile dysfunction (ED) in men. It’s also under the generic name Sildenafil. Like all other PDE5 (or phosphodiesterase-5) inhibitors, it helps adult males get and keep an erection for prolonged sexual intercourse.

How does Viagra work?

Viagra treats ED by tackling the telltale symptoms of this condition.

A man gets an erection when he’s sexually stimulated, and cyclic guanosine monophosphates (cGMPs) – a form of protein – cause increased blood flow to the penis. Enzymes called PDE5 to break down cGMPs and reverse the erection. In people experiencing ED, PDE5 works quickly and breaks down these molecules at the onset of erection. It stops the man from getting an erection when sexually aroused.

However, Viagra blocks the swift action of PDE5. It lets the penis’ Corpus cavernosum smooth muscles (CCSMs) relax for increased blood flow to the penis. This way, Sildenafil helps men get and maintain an erection long enough to engage in sexual intercourse. But it only leads to an erection in the presence of external sexual stimulations.

Precautions and Warnings with Viagra

Consider these precautions when taking Viagra:

  • Call your doctor if you face dizziness, blurred vision, confusion, or other side effects
  • Tell your doctor your medical history before taking this medicine
  • Alcohol and marijuana can increase their side effects
  • Tell your dentist/surgeon if you’re on Viagra

Viagra Side Effects

Side effects of using Sildenafil include:

Common Side Effects

  • Nausea
  • Insomnia
  • Hot flushes
  • Runny nose
  • Digestive issues
  • Headache/Dizziness

Severe Side Effects

  • Seizures
  • Heart problems
  • Ringing in your ears
  • Swollen hands or feet
  • Blurred vision or vision loss

Rare Side Effects

  • Sudden hearing loss
  • Allergic reactions (e.g., skin rashes)
  • Priapism (i.e., a painfully long-lasting erection)
  • Non-arteritic anterior ischemic optic neuropathy (NAION)

Drug Interactions with Viagra

Viagra affects how your body processes other drugs. Similarly, different drugs may change the way your body uses Viagra. That’s why you should tell your doctors which drugs you are on before getting a Viagra recommendation.

Also, avoid drinking fruit juices when using Viagra. Don’t take another ED medicine when using Viagra. Also, don’t use fish oil or ibuprofen. Ask your doctor about any other dietary restrictions you’ll have to follow to avoid worsening the side effects of Viagra.

Moreover, Sildenafil is known to interact with these meds:

Cost of Viagra in the USA

If you want to purchase Viagra without insurance, six 100mg pills will cost $544, as per one estimate. The tablets made under the name brand name Viagra can be more expensive than the generic version of Sildenafil. A 30-day supply of Viagra will easily set you back over $2,700.

Why is Viagra so expensive?

When the FDA finally approved the generic version of this drug, the prices of Sildenafil dropped by 90% out of the blue. However, if you are paying for Sildenafil out of pocket, you should turn to services like MyRx Outlet, where Viagra is available at a lesser price than the average US pharmacy.

Private-sector drug manufacturing companies face fewer pricing restrictions in the United States. Drug companies can exclusively supply a new drug for several years (up to two decades in some cases); Pfizer monopolized this freedom to hike up the price of Viagra. Also, they factored in many other expenses in Sildefanil’s final price, such as:

  • Research
  • Manufacturing
  • Packaging
  • Advertising
  • Distribution

Strengths and Dosages of Viagra

Your doctor will prescribe you the strength tailored to your unique needs. Usually, users get a starting dose of 50mg. A typical user will take this drug once per day, ingested an hour before sexual activity. The second-most commonly starting dose is 25mg.

Overdosing on Viagra can lead to irregular heartbeats, stroke, and even death.

Viagra comes in blue, diamond-shaped tablets with the word “Pfizer” inscribed on the body. This drug is taken orally without being chewed, crushed, or broken. It is commonly available in these strengths:

  • 25mg
  • 50mg
  • 100mg

Viagra Alternatives

Viagra (Sildenafil) is available primarily as a name-brand drug. Some doctor-approved Viagra alternatives include the following:

  • Cialis (Tadalafil)
  • Spedra (Avanafil)
  • Stendra (Avanafil)
  • Staxyn (Vardenafil)
  • Levitra (Vardenafil)

FAQs – Viagra

What is Viagra?

Viagra is a brand name under which the drug Sildenafil is sold.

How Does Viagra Work?

When the user is sexually aroused, Viagra helps flow more blood into the blood vessels of the penis to help the user keep and maintain an erection.

How long does Viagra Last?

Viagra helps a man maintain an erection for 4 hours.

Who Makes Viagra?

Pfizer discovered Vagina accidentally when researching medicine for angina. This tablet was approved in 1998 by the FDA.

What Happens if a Woman Takes Viagra?

Viagra isn’t a cure for a low sex drive. It will increase the flow of blood to the genitals and cause vaginal lubrication. But it may not increase a woman’s libido or boost her sexual desire.

How long does it take for Viagra to Work?

It takes 30 to 45 minutes for Viagra to start working. However, the user must be sexually excited for it to be effective.

How Long Does Viagra Stay in Your System?

Viagra can take between 2 to 6 hours to wear off completely. It depends on how strong your dose is; a stronger dose wears off slowly, while a smaller dose leaves your system much earlier.

How do I use Viagra for the Best Results?

  • Avoid heavy, fatty meals
  • Take the tablet on an empty stomach
  • Take it no less than 30 minutes before having sex

How and when do I Take Viagra?

Normally, Viagra is taken an hour before planned sexual activity. But you can take Viagra anywhere between half an hour to 4 hours before having sex. It works when the user is sexually stimulated and needs to maintain an erection. Viagra is effective for 4 hours.

How Much Viagra Should I Take for the First Time?

The standard starting dose of Viagra is 50mg; however, some patients may be prescribed 25mg (older gentlemen, for example). So, a single 50mg tablet of Viagra is the ideal starting dose for first-time users.

What age do men need Viagra?

Erectile dysfunction can start at any age. However, 40% of 40-year-old men and 70% of 70-year-old men suffer from ED, so they need Viagra to maintain a healthy sex life.

How Much Viagra can you take?

You should only take 50mg to 100mg of Viagra in a single day to treat ED. However, older adults aged 65+ must lower this dosage and take 25mg tablets to be safe from Sildenafil’s side effects. Taking more than one dose of Viagra in 24 hours can be harmful to you.

What foods should I avoid with Viagra?

  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Fatty food (cream, butter, and soft cheese)
  • Junk food (frozen meals, chips, and bacon)
  • Fruit juices (pomelo, grapefruit, and pomegranate)

What if Viagra doesn’t work?

If Viagra doesn’t work, there are other options your doctor can discuss with you. These might include medications like Alprostadil or devices like vacuum erection devices. But taking more than a single dose of Viagra within a 24-hour period isn’t safe.

IMPORTANT NOTE: The information provided here is for educational purposes only and is not intended to serve as medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment recommendations. It should not be taken as an endorsement of any specific medication or treatment. Individual health conditions and responses to treatment can vary greatly; therefore, this information should not be seen as a guarantee of safety, suitability, or effectiveness for any particular individual. Always consult with a healthcare professional for personalized medical advice and before making any decisions regarding your health or treatment plans.

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