Common Side Effects of Sildenafil Erectile Dysfunction (ED) Medication
Sildenafil, a common prescription medication used to cure erectile dysfunction, is taken in pill form. It increases blood flow in the penis to aid men to get a hard erection. More than two-thirds of males have benefited from taking it after consuming it as recommended. Sildenafil can also be used to cure pulmonary hypertension (also known as high blood pressure in the vessels that supply the heart) and is available on prescription.
Sildenafil has been the subject of many studies.
One study comparing the use of sildenafil with Viagra showed that patients taking Viagra increased their sex drive and their stamina as well, but they did experience some side effects from the medicines. Two other studies comparing sildenafil with other medicines showed mixed results. One study showed improvement in patients who were taking other anti-depressants. A third study that compared sildenafil with other anti-epileptic medicines showed mixed results, but it did show improvement in patients with severe erectile dysfunction caused by other factors. So the main benefits of this medicine are improvement in male sexual dysfunctions, but you should discuss any other possible issues with your doctor or pharmacist.
Common side effects from sildenafil are headache,
nasal irritation, nasal discharge, and itching or swelling near the tip of the penis. Other less common, but still possible side effects from sildenafil include allergic reactions to any of the ingredients in the product and allergic reactions to diuretics or nitrates found in certain ingredients of the medication. Some patients may also have a skin rash after taking sildenafil, especially in those with pale skin.
The primary mechanism
of action of sildenafil as an anti-depressant is it affects the blood vessels. Other researchers have shown that the potassium channels are activated by the action of sildenafil and thereby relax the blood vessels. It has also been proven that sildenafil increases the amount of dopamine released into the brain by increasing the number of GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid) receptors present in the brain. This increase in GABA is believed to be responsible for the patients’ increased sex drive and stamina.
Another relatively common side effect
of sildenafil are the following: erection problems, difficulty maintaining an erection, and difficulty achieving ejaculation. Erection problems can be caused by either physical conditions or psychological issues. Physical conditions such as ailing circulation and poor muscle tone can prevent a man from getting an erection sufficient to stay erect or maintain one. Psychological issues that cause problems are anger, anxiety, and nervousness. Both of these can lead to psychological impairment and the inability to obtain and maintain an erection, which may result in serious side effects like erectile dysfunction and hearing loss.
One of the most common side effects
seen in patients taking sildenafil though, is that of a rare side effect wherein the patient develops corpus cavernosum. This is usually seen only in men who have enlarged prostate, prostate, or seminal vesicles, as noted by the size, shape, and color of the enlarged blood vessels. It’s thought that this occurrence is caused by the increased sensitivity of the smooth muscle relaxation in the penis during erection and is thus causing the vessels to contract. In rare cases, there may also be a cyst formation in the corpus cavernosum which if not treated could cause bladder and kidney problems.