Sildenafil Dosage Guide with Risks and Precautions
In this article, you will learn more about Sildenafil dosage, its uses, precautions, risks, and side effects. Before we begin, let us take a look at what erectile dysfunction (ED) is and how Sildenafil citrate can be used to treat it.
Sildenafil is a drug that is primarily used to treat erectile dysfunction and pulmonary arterial hypertension. It is usually administered orally as a pill to make it more easily metabolizable by the body. The full name of the medicine is Sildenafil citrate. It is manufactured by Pfizer Inc and is commonly sold under the brand name Viagra.
Pfizer Inc was the primary company to introduce general Viagra via a subsidiary referred to as Greenstone. Likewise, other agencies around the sector also manufacture Sildenafil pills. Among them are Teva Pharmaceuticals, Aurobindo, Bristol Labs, etc.
Erectile Dysfunction (ED)
Erectile dysfunction, known as “impotence” to a layman, is a condition where a male is unable to get and/or maintain an erection. This results in a decrease in sexual pleasure and performance. Thus, doctors recommend taking the appropriate Sildenafil dosage prior to intercourse; since the effects of the drug last only for a few hours.
This condition can be caused due to various factors, both psychological (such as anxiety, stress, etc.) and physical (such as diabetes, obesity, etc.) In ageing men, erectile dysfunction is often accompanied by a plethora of prostrate problems and even premature ejaculation.
How Does Sildenafil Treat Erectile Dysfunction?
An appropriate Sildenafil dosage contains a good amount of a specific compound of cellulose, which helps in increasing blood metabolism levels, in turn directing more blood flow to the penis. The end result of this process is generally a longer erection time than usual.
According to the NHS UK, around 67% of males reported increased erection times after taking the right Sildenafil dosage.
Other Uses of Sildenafil
Here are some additional uses of sildenafil:
Along with being a primary treatment for erectile dysfunction, Sildenafil is also used to treat a lung condition called pulmonary arterial hypertension. In this condition, the blood vessels that supply blood to the lungs accumulate a high blood pressure, due to which they get clogged up, resulting in decreased flow of blood to the arteries of the lungs.
These arteries are essential in supplying oxygen to other parts of the body as well, which is why de-clogging and relaxing them is essential, so as to increase the oxygen intake levels of the different organs too.
This is where the drug comes in and does the trick. It contains a phosphodiesterase type 5 inhibitor, which means that a good Sildenafil dosage eases this condition of hypertension by widening and de-clogging the blood vessels so that the flow of blood to the lungs is increased and there is no barrier blocking it.
The ease of blood flow to particular areas of the body using Sildenafil helps with a host of daily activities that require unrestricted blood flow, such as jogging, running or any type of cardiovascular exercise.
Thus, in the long run, an appropriate level of Sildenafil dosage can help in increasing exercise capacity levels too. However, the drug must be taken almost regularly over a long duration to affect the aforementioned flow of blood.
Now that we have seen the importance and usage of Sildenafil, we shall take a look at its ideal dosage.
Dosage of Sildenafil
Medicines do not work unless taken in the right amounts and at the right times. The right Sildenafil dosage is not a fixed one, it always depends on the condition of the patient and their biological data, including their daily habits.
For Erectile Dysfunction
If treating erectile dysfunction, the dosage for most patients is administering 50 milligrams of the drug orally. This has to be done around 1 hour before performing intercourse. However, the time frame is flexible for some, and thus they can take Sildenafil up to 4 hours before intercourse as well.
The maximum frequency of Sildenafil dosage recommended by professionals is once per day, which is 50mg. However, depending on the patient’s tolerance and the effectiveness the drug has on their condition, this dosage can be reduced to 25 mg or even increased to 100mg a day.
The good thing about Sildenafil is that it mostly does not interfere with food nutrients, meaning you can take your Sildenafil dosage either with or without a meal, however you may please.
For Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension
The discovery of Sildenafil citrate as a treatment for pulmonary hypertension has been a breakthrough because this drug has proved its efficiency and reliability in multiple patient tests and cases for the treatment of this particular condition. As mentioned before, it can improve pulmonary artery pressure, pulmonary vascular struggle, cardiac index, and exercise tolerance.
Sildenafil dosage for this treatment includes the patient administering the drug twice a day for a total of 50 milligrams, around 4 to 6 hours apart. Of course, this dosage can be increased or lessened depending on the effect, which differs from patient to patient.
An important point to note here is that the patient must strictly follow their doctor’s orders and stick to the dosage prescribed since an overdose of Sildenafil might cause metabolic imbalance and lead to complications.
Side Effects of Sildenafil
Just like many other drugs out there on the market, this drug has a number of side effects, especially if not taken in the recommended quantities as the Sildenafil dosage prescribed by your doctor.
Some common side effects of Sildenafil are listed below:
- Hot flushes
- Abnormal vision
These are usually mild to moderate and can go away by themselves. However, there are some rare side effects as well:
- Body rashes
- Back pain
These are less common but a little more severe, and usually the consultation of a doctor is required in this case.
Interactions of Sildenafil
Sildenafil often interacts with the following other drugs and could cause complications:
- Adderall (including amphetamines)
- Aspirins (even low strength ones)
- Cialis (and other tadalafil)
- Fish oil (and other omega-3 constituents)
- Symbicort (budesonides and formoterol)
Along with these, Sildenafil dosages are also prone to interacting with Vitamins such as Vitamin B12, Vitamin C and Vitamin B3.
When it comes to consumables, along with the aforementioned vitamins, Sildenafil also reacts to alcohol consumption adversely. This is because its “lowering blood pressure” effect is multiplied when ethanol comes into the picture, thus lowering your blood pressure at an alarming rate.
If you are receiving a therapeutic Sildenafil dosage, you should evade the consistent consumption of large amounts of grapefruits. Grapefruit can raise the levels of Sildenafil in your body and delay the time it takes for the drug to begin working.
Warnings to keep in mind before using Sildenafil
Listed below are the warnings and precautions you must be aware of before you start using Sildenafil:
- The drug can cause priapism, which is an erection that refuses to go away. If you are experiencing a prolonged erection of more than 4 hours, you must immediately see a medical professional about the same.
- The drug can also cause a sudden loss of vision in one or both eyes. If this happens, one must stop consuming the drug immediately and consult a doctor.
- It is not advisable for children to take Sildenafil unless otherwise prescribed.
Alternatives to Sildenafil
Sildenafil has a number of alternatives worth taking a look at:
- Cialis (Tadalafil) (contains PDE 5 inhibitor)
- Vardenafil (Levitra and Staxyn) (contains PDE 5 inhibitor)
- Avanafil (Stendra)
A correct and well-moderated amount of Sildenafil dosage can prove to be particularly useful, especially in the treatment of erectile dysfunction. However, the keyword “moderated” is extremely important here because an overdose on this drug can cause serious health complications and permanent body part damage.
Thus, with this article, we have gone over the uses, side effects, dosage, warnings and alternatives of the drug Sildenafil. We hope this helped you become aware and decide for yourself about the same.
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June 14, 2021 Sam Bell