Sildenafil is more popularly known as the brand Viagra. This prescription drug is quite popular among men, as it primarily treats erectile dysfunction. Its use on women has not been proven. Aside from Viagra, Sildenafil is also marketed as Revatio, a drug intended for an entirely different condition.
Aside from erectile dysfunction, research shows that Sildenafil may also be used to treat pulmonary arterial hypertension. When used for this purpose, the Revatio brand is recommended. Sildenafil was discovered by three Pfizer scientists although it was initially developed as a treatment for cardiovascular disorders and not erectile dysfunction or pulmonary arterial hypertension.
Sildenafil was patented in 1996 and became available in 1998 after it was approved by the FDA on March 27 of the same year. This prescription drug has been quite popular. Today, it directly competes with two other drugs that are addressing the same issue, such as taladafil and verdenafil.
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Aside from addressing sexual dysfunction among men, research shows that Sildenafil may also help those who experience antidepressant-induced erectile dysfunction. This prescription drug may possibly be used by men suffering from diabetes mellitus.
The two other diseases that Sildenafil may possibly address are pulmonary hypertension and Raynaud’s phenomenon. Research shows that Sildenafil improves the symptoms suffered by patients with pulmonary arterial hypertension. It also has a great potential for providing relief to those with secondary Raynaud’s phenomenon although further studies are needed to back it up.
For years now, Sildenafil has been associated with other recreational drugs, and it is mainly due to the assumption that it can increase libido, improve sexual performance, and increase penis size. However, using it as such is not recommended. It has to be taken only under the supervision of a doctor. Sildenafil has side effects that may directly affect bodily functions if not administered properly. Sildenafil is now a generic drug after its patent has expired in 2017 in the US and 2012 in the rest of the world.
How Sildenafil Works
Sildenafil relaxes the muscle of the blood vessels to increase blood flow. It inhibits the cGMP-specific phosphodiesterase type 5 enzyme, which directly affects the flow of blood in the male reproductive organ.
There are several known side effects in using Sildenafil and these include indigestion, headache, flushing, impaired vision, and nasal congestion. It may also interact with other drugs, which is why it should be used following the prescription of a licensed physician. Sildenafil can’t be used along with other medicines such as protease inhibitors, cimetidine, and erythromycin. If it has to be taken along with an alpha-blocker, proper administration is necessary.
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