Sildenafil Vs Viagra – What Is The Difference?

The short answer is absolutely nothing.

To explain this properly we’ll look at the long answer.

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The History of Viagra

pfizerGoing back to the very start of the drug development process, one drug company will spend anywhere up to £1.2 billion and take up to 12 years to develop one new drug that reaches the market. This money is used in the discovery or design of the drug and clinical trials to prove it has the effect it is supposed to; it is safe to use; and what side effects might occur in using it. In the case of Viagra, it was developed by Pfizer and marketed from 1998. The name Viagra is the brand name, decided upon by Pfizer, while the scientific name of the drug, known as the generic name is sildenafil, this is decided upon by an expert committee.1 A new drug needs authorisation from a drug licencing authority to confirm its effectiveness, quality and safety before it can be used in the public and this is gained in America from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and in the UK by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Authority (MHRA). When the drug is first developed, the company that has developed it receives a patent for the drug that lasts for a set time, for example, 20 years.2 This gives them exclusive rights to the drug and means no one else can manufacture and sell that drug for 20 years; until the patent is up.

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What Happens When Medication Comes Off Patent?

Once these 20 years are up, it’s anyone’s game and this is when the competition starts. Drug companies known as generic manufacturers can now apply to make and sell the same drug, under what is known as the generic name, in this case, sildenafil. This manufacturer is not required to carry out the costly animal and human trials and clinical research that the first company was required to, as it is now known that the drug does work and viagra is safe. However, the company must still meet certain standards for the drug to be approved. The generic form of the medication must contain the same active ingredient at the same strength as the branded drug; be in an identical dosage form e.g. tablet or capsule and must be taken in the same way; must be for the same indication; meet the appropriate standards for batch identity, quality, purity and strength; and be manufactured under the strict standards of good manufacturing practice required for the branded drug. The most important factor is that the generic drug is bioequivalent to the brand. This means that the tablets will contain the same amount of active drug substance and when taken; the same amount will be absorbed into the body; act in the same way; and will produce identical effects to the branded drug; and obviously, be used to treat Erectile Dysfunction

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As these generics manufacturers are not making the new drug from scratch, and are essentially copying the formula from another approved drug, they do not have to spend the huge amount of money on development and clinical trials. This allows this drug to be sold at a much lower price, and so is much more cost effective for health care providers and patients.

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Viagra & Generic Sildenafil

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Product Description

How does Viagra and Sildenafil work?

Viagra (Sildenafil) helps men to get and maintain an erection when sexually stimulated and/or excited. The medicine relaxes the blood vessels in the penis which results in more blood flowing to the penis when you are sexually excited.

How do I take it?

You should take Viagra (Sildenafil) approximately 1 hour before planning to have intercourse. Within a window of between 30 minutes and 4 hours after you take the medicine, it will be easier to keep and maintain an erection when you are sexually excited. If you take this medicine after a meal with a high fat content it may take a little longer to start working. This medicine will only work when you are sexually excited. You won’t get an erection just by taking Viagra (Sildenafil).

Dosage

The standard recommended dose for Viagra (Sildenafil) is 50mg and this will be suitable for most people.  If this dose is not effective, you can try 100mg and if 50mg gives you side effects you can also reduce the dose to 25mg tablets.

You must not take more than 100mg daily of Sildenafil/ Viagra. Clinical trials have been conducted in patients taking up to 200mg sildenafil and it was found that ‘doses of 200mg did not result in increased efficacy but did increase the incidence of adverse reactions (headache, flushing, dizziness, dyspepsia, nasal congestion, and altered vision).’

In addition, in patients taking more than 100mg daily, there have been reports of rhabdomyolysis (a breakdown in skeletal muscle tissue the byproducts of which can lead to kidney failure), visual perception changes, vertebral artery dissection (a tear in the artery supplying blood to the brain), heart attacks and aggressive behaviour.

If the 100mg strength doesn’t work for you, there may be alternatives you can try and we recommend that you call us for a free consultation with our pharmacist or doctor to discuss any underlying conditions you may have. We recommend that all men taking medicine for erectile dysfunction have regular tests for blood pressure, cholesterol, diabetes and hormone imbalances. For instance, it may be that by fixing a hormone imbalance such as testosterone, your Viagra medication will be even more effective.

In addition, drug manufacturers do not advise patients to split tablets in half to get the correct dosage as they cannot guarantee that the active ingredient will be distributed evenly throughout the tablet.  For instance, if you cut a 100mg tablet in two, you may find that you get 80mg in one half of the tablet and 20mg in the other half leading to either an overdose (increased risk of side effects) or a suboptimal dose (the medication may not work).

It is important that you choose the correct dose for you. If you wish to talk to our pharmacist or doctor about this, please contact us in the pharmacy on 01625 460621 or email [email protected]

Side Effects

Viagra (Sildenafil) is normally well tolerated, however, side effects can include:

  • Headache
  • Dizziness
  • Nausea

Side effects normally subside after a few hours, however, if you experience a prolonged or painful erection (longer than 4 hours), then you must contact your doctor immediately.

Drug interactions

There are a number of medicines which interact with Sildenafil/ Viagra. For an exhaustive list please see the patient information leaflet (see section below) or call us in the pharmacy to discuss your specific situation. The main drug interactions are listed here:

Recreational drugs such as ‘poppers’ or amyl nitrate
Alpha blockers used for urinary retention or blood pressure problems (eg Flomax or Cardura)
Anti- arrhythmic drugs such as disopyramide
Antibiotics such as erythromycin
Antifungals such as itraconazole
Antivirals such as drugs used to treat HIV
Bosentan
Cobicistat
Calcium channel blockers to treat blood pressure and angina such as amlodipine
Dapoxetine (Priligy – used to treat premature ejaculation)
Grapefruit juice**
Nicorandil
Nitrates
Riociguat
Cimetidine (to treat stomach ulcers)

Please do not take Sildenafil/Viagra if you have taken any of the above drugs within the last 60 days without first consulting with either us in the Pharmacy ([email protected] / 01625 460621) or via email with our doctor [email protected]

**We advise not to take Sildenafil/Viagra with grapefruit juice as the blood concentration of Sildenafil will possibly be increased resulting in side effects.

Patient Information Leaflets

Please click here for the patient information leaflet for Viagra.

For Actavis Sildenafil please see the following leaflets: 100mg, 50mg, 25mg.

Storing Medicines Safely

Please keep your medicine out of the reach of children and store at room temperature.  Unwanted medicine can be disposed of by returning it to any local pharmacy or indeed to us here for us to dispose of it for you.

51 reviews for Viagra & Generic Sildenafil

  1. robert
    5 out of 5

    robert:

    Great service & a great price the best online pharmacy I have used

    • Robbie Toan

      Robbie Toan:

      Thanks Robert for your kind comments, Robbie Toan

  2. David
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    David:

    Super fast delivery great product great price will be ordering again . Thanks

  3. Philip
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    Generic tablets work well, highly professional service.

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    This is my first order with Assuredpharmacy and I am very pleased with all processes involved with my purchase. I found the web site clear and easy to use, the prices very competitive, the prescription service very convenient and and efficient, and delivery was “super” quick. I will be using Assuredpharmacy again in the future.

  5. Doug
    5 out of 5

    Doug:

    Only used one as yet did the same as viagra, At last value for money

  6. Sherwan
    5 out of 5

    Sherwan:

    I will order from here in the future, discreet, friendly service and the cheapest on the internet. Also gave me a discount which I can use in the future when ever I want which I will and I’m happy about.

  7. David
    5 out of 5

    David:

    Professional service. Discreet packaging and speedy delivery.

  8. John
    5 out of 5

    John:

    fast service, generic worked a treat

  9. Christopher
    5 out of 5

    Christopher:

    impressed with the fast reliable service of AP – the generic worked perfectly – thanks

  10. frank
    5 out of 5

    frank:

    fast, efficient service and very cheap,,,,would recommend generic compared to branded as it worked completely the same and a lot cheaper.

Add a review

As many different generics companies can manufacture the same drug once the patent is expired, this allows competition between them and can drive prices down even further. The cheaper drug does not mean lower quality; it is simply because the companies did not have to foot the bill on development, testing, marketing and promotion of the drug. By the time their generic comes to market, the healthcare industry is aware of the drug and knows what it does, how effective it is and what side effects it can cause. This means a very reduced spend on advertising of the drug.Viagra 50mg

Conclusion

So in conclusion, Pfizer developed the branded product Viagra, containing the drug sildenafil. After the patent expired in 2013, generics companies such as Teva were able to begin manufacturing the sildenafil tablets, which have to be proven to work in the same way and have the same effect as Viagra and are manufactured to the same quality standards as all other drugs. There is no difference in the effect of the two products. Since Pfizer did all the work in the research, clinical trialling and marketing of Viagra, generics companies did not have to spend the millions of pounds required to do this. Therefore the price of sildenafil is much less than that of Viagra, and it is, therefore, the more cost-effective option.

 

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References

1 NHS Choices http://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/Medicinesinfo/Pages/Brandnamesandgenerics.aspx Accessed 01.11.14

2 FDA http://www.fda.gov/Drugs/ResourcesForYou/Consumers/QuestionsAnswers/ucm100100.htm Accessed 01.11.14

3 Franl, R., 2007. The Ongoing Regulation of Generic Drugs. N Engl J Med 357. http://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/nejmp078193 Accessed 01.11.14

 

Assured Pharmacy is not liable for the currency or accuracy of the information contained in this blog post. For specific information about your personal medical condition, please contact our doctors or pharmacists for advice on [email protected].