How Much Sildenafil Is Too Much?

How Much Sildenafil Is Too Much?

If you are considering sildenafil for treatment of erectile dysfunction or pulmonary arterial hypertension, it’s important to understand the drug and any potential side effects. As sildenafil comes in three forms – an oral tablet, an oral suspension (liquid), and an injection given by a doctor – it can be crucial to know your correct dosage before beginning and follow your doctor’s orders to the letter.

Proper Dosage

Overall, sildenafil citrate (Viagra) – like similar phosphodiesterase-5 blockers like vardenafil (Levitra) or tadalafil (Cialis) – is an FDA-approved prescription drug used to treat erectile dysfunction. Under the brand-name Revatio, it is used to treat pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH).  To date, it’s been used by millions of men each year without serious side effects or health issues. For erectile dysfunction, it works by increasing both the body’s levels of nitric oxide and blood flow to the penis during times of sexual arousal. The recommended dosage for healthy adult males is between 25mg (for pulmonary hypertension) and 100 mg per 24-hour period.

Dosage And Timing

If you are taking sildenafil for erectile dysfunction, you should take it no more than once a day. While you can take it up to four hours before engaging in sexual activity, it typically takes between 30 to 60 minutes to take effect. Taking additional medication will not prolong the effects.

If the dosage does not work for you the first time, your doctor may suggest taking the drug several other occasions at the same dosage.  Most doctors recommend trying sildenafil up to eight times without adjusting the dosage.

What’s Too Much?

According to the FDA, 100 mg is the highest dosage of sildenafil you should ever take. Misuse of medication can cause unpleasant side effects that range from mild to life-threatening. Common side effects of sildenafil include:

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  • Headaches
  • Dizziness
  • Indigestion
  • Flushing
  • Trouble Sleeping
  • Low blood pressure
  • Nasal Congestion
  • Chest pain
  • Hearing loss
  • Temporary Vision loss

If you currently take any alpha-blockers ( prescribed for high blood pressure or prostate problems), riociguat (Adempas), antifungal medications (Itraconazole, Ketoconazole) or any nitrite (chest pain medication) such as isosorbide dinitrate (Isordil), isosorbide mononitrate (Monoket), Amyl nitrate, and nitroglycerin (Minitran, Nitro-Dur, Nitromist, Nitrostat, others), you should not take sildenafil. Taken with certain prescription drugs, Sildenafil and other PDE5 inhibitors can cause complications including heart problems, lower blood pressure, or increased risk of heart attack.

If you have any known medical conditions (including any heart conditions, irregular heartbeat, or Peyronie’s disease), check with your doctor for any possible drug interactions or possible allergic reaction.

One serious side effect that can lead to hospitalization is priapism, or a prolonged erection of the penis due to increased blood flow. This condition can last for hours, isn’t caused by sexual stimulation, and is typically painful. If you experience an erection lasting more than four hours, you should seek immediate medical help.

There is also evidence that taking too much sildenafil can cause permanent retinal damage and loss of vision. Misuse of your medication can exacerbate common visual symptoms to permanent injury. It can also cause ‘visual disturbances’ in men with the retinitis pigmentosa genetic mutation.

Always be safe when taking any medication for erectile dysfunction. Speak with your health care provider and follow all medical advice for recommended dosage. As always, should you experience any side effect in your specific dosage, please stop any future use until you are able to speak with your doctor. There are many ways in which to speak with a healthcare professional these days that don’t require you leaving your home or even visiting the pharmacy so you can find your future solutions to everyday problems with discretion and dignity.