ED Medications

The inability of a man to get or hold an erection long enough to perform sexual intercourse is called Erectile Dysfunction (ED).Sexual arousal for men is a process which involves a number of factors such as blood vessels, nerves, muscles, emotions and hormones. Fluctuations in any of these factors can lead to ED. Although ED is not very uncommon, if experienced frequently, it might be a sign of some underlying health problems.

The good thing is that ED can be treated and there are a number of great drugs out there in the market which help in dealing with this condition. The most commonly used ED medications are Tadalafil (Cialis), Vardenafil (Levitra, Staxyn), Avanafil (Stendra), Sildenafil (Viagra).

Mechanism Of Action

These drugs are PDE5 inhibitor which are used in order to block the effect of PDE5 ( phosphodiesterase type 5 ) in the muscle cells which line the blood vessels of the penis. On sexual stimulation, there is a local release of Nitrous Oxide (NO). Generic Viagra inhibits PDE5, thereby increasing the levels cGMP in corpus cavernosum in the penis. This results in smooth muscle relaxation and the inflow of blood to the penis in the corpus cavernosum. Since all of these drugs are PDE5 inhibitors, The mechanism of action remains the same for all of them.

1. Viagra

Viagra, very commonly known as the First Erectile Dysfunction drug is the little blue pill which is typically recommended in the doses of 50mg although it may vary from one person to another person. It is usually asked to be taken 30 minutes before sex.on the track starts acting in 30 to 45 minutes and the action lasts for about 3 to 4 hours. The half life of this drug is about four hours.

2. Levitra Or Staxyn

Levitra or Staxyn (Vardenafil Hydrochloride) is the second most commonly prescribed drugs for erectile dysfunction. Just like Viagra they struck also lasts for about 3 to 4 hours and takes about 30 minutes to act. Usually it is prescribed in the dozes of 10 mg.

3. Cialis

Cialis (Tadalafil) is the most recently introduced and by far one of the best drugs for ED. The drug start acting within 15 minutes and the effects last for about 24 to 36 hours. Like Levitra, Cialis is also prescribed in the noses of 10 mg however they can be increased or adjusted by the doctor as per one's needs.

As mentioned earlier, the mechanism of action of all of these drugs is the same therefore the side-effects are more or less the same as well with some additions here and there. Let's walk through the side effects of these drugs.

Side Effects

  • - Can lower the blood pressure
  • - If taken along with alcohol, can lower blood pressure even more
  • - Should not be mixed with high blood pressure medications
  • - Rashes
  • - Feeling dizzy
  • - Abnormal sweating
  • - Difficulty in breathing
  • - Headache
  • - Heartburn
  • - Flushing
  • - Muscle or back pain
  • - Nausea
  • - Mucus accumulation
  • - May cause temporary vision alterations
  • - Unable to differentiate between colors blue and green (rarely)
  • - Chest pain
  • - Light headedness
  • - Memory problems
  • - Ringing and Tingling sensation in the ears

One of the most absolute contraindication of these drugs is the use of Organic Nitrates. PDE5 inhibitors can cause transient low blood pressure. Using organic nitrates within 48 hours of the consumption of any of these drugs. Hence it is important to consult your doctor before starting these medications as it may interfere with the action of Nitrates and cause angina.