What Is Sildenafil

There is a great multitude of people that suffer from erectile dysfunction throughout the world.

Erectile dysfunction, also called impotence, is when a man lacks the ability to get or keep a penis hard enough to engage in sexual activity. Although it is not a life-threatening condition, it can seriously impact a sufferer’s quality of life and relationships dramatically. Erectile dysfunction is oftentimes a wedge that can come between a couple, especially in their later years.

However, Sildenafil is a medication that could potentially help you to overcome erectile dysfunction, should you be someone who suffers from it. Any questions about the nature of Sildenafil, its function, and its history will be briefly covered in this section.

A Brief Overview of Sildenafil

As mentioned before, Sildenafil is a medication prescribed to treat erectile dysfunction. It can also be prescribed to treat an illness called pulmonary hypertension.

Sildenafil is often called by its brand name, Viagra, in relation to its use in the treatment of erectile dysfunction. It helps to solve that problem by increasing the amount of blood that can enter the penis. It does that by enlarging the blood vessels in that area to promote blood flow. Many men have reported that they have an increased ability to get an erection after they have taken Sildenafil.

In order to get the effects of Sildenafil, you must administer it correctly. Generally speaking, Sildenafil is administered by a tablet that you swallow. In order for Sildenafil to work properly, you should take it at least thirty minutes before you plan to engage in intercourse. That thirty minutes acts as a buffer window for the medication to take effect.

Never take Sildenafil more than once per day. Taking more than one pill per day could result in a dangerously low dip in your blood pressure.

Always speak with your doctor about the dosage that is best for you.

A Short History of Sildenafil

Although Sildenafil has not been in use for a very long time, it has nonetheless drastically changed the lives of many men.

It was first discovered to be a treatment for erectile dysfunction a little before 1996. As with many other types of medication, the discovery that Sildenafil could be used as a treatment for erectile dysfunction was actually a side effect from what the researchers were initially trying to do with the drug.

The researchers’ original, intended goal was to see if Sildenafil could be used as a relaxant. One of their focuses was relieving the symptoms of hypertension. However, they accidentally discovered during the trials that Sildenafil also increased blood flow to the genitalia as volunteers began notifying the doctors that they were experiencing increased and better erections.

After that set of experiments, a patent was created in 1996. Two years after the patent was created, the Federal Drug Administration in the United States approved it for general use among the population. Before that point, there had not been an orally administered medication that was used to treat erectile dysfunction.

Though it was a relatively new medication, there was a very large demand for it. In the year 2008, sales for Viagra, one of the brands of Sildenafil, had reached upwards of two billion United States dollars across the entire world.

After a time though, generic brands of Sildenafil were starting to become available in the marketplace. Once that happened, competition started to lower the price of Sildenafil even more, thereby resulting in even more popularity for the medication. Today, Sildenafil remains one of the most popular treatment for erectile dysfunction in the world.

Details about Sildenafil

The way that Sildenafil works is not necessarily complicated. It works as a limiter of cGMP-specific phosphodiesterase type 5 (PDE5). PDE5 is an enzyme that actively degrades a different enzyme that is called cyclic guanosine monophosphate (cGMP). cGMP is responsible for the relaxation of the smooth muscle tissue in the penis, which PDE5 inhibits. For men who have erectile dysfunction, the amount of cGMP in the bloodstream is lower than is required to get an erection.

Therefore, Sildenafil works by inhibiting the process of PDE5, limiting its effectiveness so that the amount of cGMP in the bloodstream can increase. This allows the muscles in the penis to relax. When this happens, the blood vessels in the penis are able to dilate, increasing the amount of blood that passes in and out of the penis. When blood is able to move back and forth more freely, you gain the ability to get a natural erection.

A Couple of Warnings

First of all, avoid taking Sildenafil if you also currently take a class of medication known as nitrates. The interaction between the two medications is unwise to pursue. Nitrates are commonly used to treat pains in the chest.

The reason why you would not wish to take these medications together is very important. Both these medications are used as relaxants but in different parts of the body. Should these medicines be taken together, a drastic drop in blood pressure could be the result. If you are one of the individuals that has a condition that requires a high blood pressure in order for your heart to beat, you especially should tell your doctor if you are already taking nitrates.

In addition, the effects of Sildenafil on women has not been thoroughly tested as of yet. Because of this, women should not take Sildenafil. Likewise, children should also not ingest Sildenafil.

This medication is meant only for adult men who suffer from erectile dysfunction. Avoid taking Sildenafil if you suffer from a low blood pressure, have had a stroke recently, had a reaction to Sildenafil or medication like it previously, or if you have serious issues with your liver or heart.

Check with Your Doctor to See If You Should Start Taking Sildenafil

As you can see, Sildenafil has helped many men to overcome their problems with erectile dysfunction. If you think that Sildenafil could help you too, ask your doctor or pharmacist if they think that you should begin taking it. They may recommend it.

As a final precaution, do not share your prescription with anyone. Even if you know someone who may also struggle with erectile dysfunction, they may have conditions or allergies that you do not know of. Instead, recommend that they should also ask their primary healthcare provider about Sildenafil.

About Asim FarooqDr Asim Farooq was born in Surrey and raised in Sussex where he attended boarding school at Brighton College. After this, he went on to study medicine at Kings College, London. After graduating, he worked in various hospitals gaining experience in a nunmber of clinical areas until he joined the GP training scheme and worked as an SHO in Accident & Emergency, Obstetrics & Gynaecology, Paediatrics and Care for the Elderly.

His interest in diabetes management has led him to co-author a book and attend various advanced level courses which permits him to initiate injectable therapies. He has also assisted in setting up and managing an excellent diabetes management service alongside two specialist nurses in Croydon.
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