How it works
Tadalafil, like other erectile dysfunction tablet treatments such as Viagra and Levitra, works by changing the way blood flows to the penis during sexual arousal. Changes in blood flow improve erections. These drugs achieve this effect by blocking an enzyme called PDE5. It’s PDE5 inhibitors. These drugs have very little effect on other parts of the body. Tablet treatments to increase erectile dysfunction and support sexual performance and relationships.
The weekend pill
Tadalafil was once known as a weekend pill. This reflects its prolonged duration of action, up to 36 hours. A tablet taken on Saturday morning, will still be active on Sunday.
This long duration of action, compared to 4 hours for Viagra and 4-5 hours for Levitra, has led to tadalafil becoming more popular. This is a trend that is likely to continue as prices fall.
Sometimes Cialis is also prescribed to treat symptoms of benign prostatic hyperplasia (enlarged prostate).
Taking tadalafil for the first time
Tadalafil tablets are available in four strengths – 2.5 mg, 5 mg, 10 mg and 20 mg. Most men take a 10mg or 20mg tablet when they need it. Lower doses of 2.5 mg and 5 mg are usually for daily use, although some men may find a single 5 mg tablet taken occasionally is all they need.
The normal initial dose is a single 10 mg tablet taken 30 minutes before sexual activity. Repeated single-dose therapy trials are recommended before switching to higher or lower-strength tablets. There is no benefit in taking a higher dose than is required. Tadalafil should not be taken simultaneously or within 36 hours of other erectile dysfunction treatments.
Side effects of tadalafil/generic Cialis
Significant side effects are uncommon. The manufacturer’s patient leaflet (links below) included in packages contains a complete list of side effects.
The most common side effect is a blue or yellowish color on vision. This is not dangerous and fades as the tablets wear out. A similar visual discoloration is common with other erectile dysfunction treatments.
Other common side effects (affecting 1% -10%) include headache, back pain, muscle aches, pain in the arms or legs, nasal congestion, facial flushing and indigestion.
A very rare but serious side effect is constant painful erections for a period of hours – priapism. Priapism can lead to permanent damage to the penis and is a medical emergency that requires urgent medical attention through a hospital A & E department.
When not to take tadalafil/generic Cialis?
Tadalafil should not be taken when the following applies. If in doubt, email our doctors or consult your doctor before requesting supplies online.
- Taking Viagra / sildenafil, Levitra / vardenafil or Spedra / avanafil concomitantly with tadalafil
- Taking Indinavir and Ritonavir to treat HIV
- Taking antifungal itraconazole or ketoconazole
- Taking nitrates for angina, including isosorbide mononitrate, isosorbide dinitrate, nicorandilium and glyceryl trinitrate – possible serious reactions
- Use of recreational drugs such as amyl nitrate (poppers) – possible serious reactions
- Taking blood pressure tablets known as alpha-blockers, also sometimes used to treat prostate enlargement, include Doxazosin, prazosin, Alfuzosin, terazosin, indoramine and tamsulosin