This article about Vardenafil is addressed to MedlinePlus.
Why is Vardenafil prescribed?
Vardenafil is used to treat erectile dysfunction (impotence; inability to get or keep an erection) in men. Vardenafil is in a class of medications called phosphodiesterase (PDE) inhibitors. It works by increasing blood flow to the penis during sexual stimulation. This increased blood flow can cause an erection. Vardenafil does not cure erectile dysfunction or increase sexual desire. Vardenafil does not prevent pregnancy or the spread of sexually transmitted diseases such as human immunodeficiency virus (HIV).
How should Vardenafil be used?
Vardenafil comes as a tablet and a rapidly disintegrating (dissolves in the mouth and is swallowed without water) tablet to take by mouth. It is usually taken as needed, with or without food, 60 minutes before sexual activity. Vardenafil usually should not be taken more often than once every 24 hours. If you have certain health conditions or are taking certain medications, your doctor may tell you to take vardenafil less often. Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully, and ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any part you do not understand. Take vardenafil exactly as directed. Do not take more or less of it or take it more often than prescribed by your doctor.
If you are taking the rapidly disintegrating tablet, check the blister pack before you take your first dose. Do not use any of the medication from the pack if any of the blisters are torn, broken, or do not contain tablets. Follow the package directions to remove the tablet from the blister package. Do not try to push the tablet through the foil. After you remove the tablet from the blister package, immediately place it on your tongue and close your mouth. The tablet will quickly dissolve. Do not take the rapidly disintegrating tablet with water or other liquids.
Your doctor will probably start you on an average dose of vardenafil tablets and increase or decrease your dose depending on your response to the medication. If you are taking the rapidly disintegrating tablets, your doctor will not be able to adjust your dose because the rapidly disintegrating tablets are only available in one strength. If you need a higher or lower dose, your doctor may prescribe regular pills instead. Tell your doctor if vardenafil is not working well or if you are experiencing side effects.
Vardenafil rapidly disintegrating tablets cannot be substituted for vardenafil tablets. Be sure that you receive only the type of vardenafil that was prescribed by your doctor. Ask your pharmacist if you have any questions about the type of vardenafil you were given.
What special dietary instructions should I follow?
Talk to your doctor about eating grapefruit or drinking grapefruit juice while taking this medicine.
What side effects can Vardenafil cause?
Vardenafil may cause side effects. Tell your doctor if any of these symptoms are severe or do not go away:
- upset stomach
- stuffy or runny nose
- flu-like symptoms
Some side effects can be serious. If you experience any of the following symptoms, call your doctor immediately:
- erection that lasts longer than 4 hours
- sudden severe loss of vision (see below for more information)
- blurred vision
- changes in color vision (seeing a blue tinge on objects, difficulty telling the difference between blue and green, or difficulty seeing at night)
- sudden decrease or loss of hearing
- ringing in ears
- swelling of the face, throat, tongue, lips, eyes, hands, feet, ankles, or lower legs
- difficulty breathing or swallowing
Vardenafil may cause other side effects. Call your doctor if you have any unusual problems while taking this medication.
Some patients experienced a sudden loss of some or all of their vision after they took vardenafil or other medications that are similar to vardenafil. The vision loss was permanent in some cases. It is not known if the medication caused vision loss. If you experience a sudden loss of vision while you are taking vardenafil, call your doctor immediately. Do not take more doses of vardenafil or similar medications such as sildenafil (Viagra) or tadalafil (Cialis) until you talk to your doctor.
Some patients experienced a sudden decrease or loss of hearing after they took vardenafil or other medications that are similar to vardenafil. The hearing loss usually involved only one ear and may not get better. It is not known if the medication caused hearing loss. If you experience a sudden loss of hearing, sometimes with ringing in the ears or dizziness, while you are taking vardenafil, call your doctor immediately. Do not take more doses of vardenafil or similar medications such as sildenafil (Viagra) or tadalafil (Cialis) until you talk to your doctor.
If you experience a serious side effect, you or your doctor may send a report to the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) MedWatch Adverse Event Reporting program online or by phone.
What should I know about the storage and disposal of Vardenafil?
Keep this medication in the container it came in, tightly closed, and out of reach of children. Store it at room temperature and away from excess heat and moisture (not in the bathroom).
Unneeded medications should be disposed of in special ways to ensure that pets, children, and others cannot consume them. However, you should not flush this medication down the toilet. Instead, the best way to dispose of your medication is through a medicine take-back program. Talk to your pharmacist or contact your local garbage/recycling department to learn about take-back programs in your community. See the FDA’s Safe Disposal of Medicines website for more information if you do not have access to a take-back program.
It is important to keep all medication out of sight and reach of children as many containers (such as weekly pill minders and those for eye drops, creams, patches, and inhalers) are not child-resistant and young children can open them easily. To protect young children from poisoning, always lock safety caps and immediately place the medication in a safe location – one that is up and away and out of their sight and reach.
In case of emergency/overdose
In case of an overdose, call the poison control helpline. If the victim has collapsed, had a seizure, has trouble breathing, or can’t be awakened, immediately call emergency services at 911.
Symptoms of overdose may include:
- back or muscle pain
- blurred vision
What other information should I know?
Keep all appointments with your doctor.
Do not let anyone else take your medication. Ask your pharmacist any questions you have about refilling your prescription.
You must keep a written list of all the prescription and nonprescription (over-the-counter) medicines you are taking, as well as any products such as vitamins, minerals, or other dietary supplements. You should bring this list with you each time you visit a doctor or if you are admitted to a hospital. It is also important information to carry with you in case of emergencies.
Ways to get it:
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