If your doctor decides that medications can be used for the treatment of erectile dysfunction (ED), there are three to choose from. Each of them can be safely used in many men with cardiovascular disease, as long as there are no contraindications.
For example, if you take nitrates for chest pain (angina), even occasionally, you cannot take any of the ED medications. Doing so could result in life-threatening low blood pressure. This is a great example of why it’s so important to tell ALL of your healthcare providers about ALL the medications you are taking.
If you also have any of the following conditions, ED medications may not be advised:
Side effects from any of these medications may include headache, flushing, indigestion or nausea, stuffy or runny nose, back pain and muscle aches (with Cialis), and temporary vision changes (with Viagra). It is unlikely that you’ll have a serious side effect, but if you have a sudden loss of hearing or vision, or an erection that lasts longer than four hours, seek medical help immediately.
- Certain high-risk heart problems, including chest pain (angina), heart failure, abnormal heart rhythms (arrhythmias) or a recent heart attack.
- Uncontrolled high or low blood pressure.
- A history of stroke within the last six months.
- Eye problems, such as retinitis pigmentosa.
- Sickle cell anemia, leukemia, multiple myeloma or another health problem that can cause an erection that won't subside (priapism).
An Overview of Medications Used to Treat Erectile Dysfunction
Here are a few other things you should know about the different medications:
Other Possible Treatments for ED
Because ED is so complicated, it can be difficult to determine the cause (or causes). As a result, it can also be difficult to determine an effective treatment. Medications are not always the answer. Below are a few more treatment options for ED: