Erectile dysfunction, also known as male impotence, is treated through several approaches. But, of all the approaches available to treat it, medications are widely popular; drugs such as sildenafil (Viagra) and tadalafil (Cialis) lead the pack. Among these two drugs, which one is better? A thorough understanding can help make a wise choice.

Erectile dysfunction or impotence among males is often treated through prescription of drugs, surgeries, implants, penile / vacuum pumps, etc. Drugs prescribed to provide extra supply of blood to the penis are Cialis (tadalafil), Viagra (sildenafil), etc.; these medications fall under a category called phosphodiesterase type-5 (PDE-5) controlling or inhibiting drugs.

PDE-5 is a substance that exert control over the size of your blood vessels; especially the muscles. PDE-5 contracts the blood vessels and alters the flow of blood. But, it takes an enlarged vessel to supply more blood to the penis. This is an important precondition for having an erect penis – during your sexual intercourse. You might have already guessed it; drugs such as tadalafil (Cialis) and sildenafil (Viagra) perform the action of controlling PDE-5 activity. Once it is controlled, PDE-5 does not contract the blood vessels, and make them stay enlarged. Such enlarged blood vessels help you have a fairly stretched spell of erection.

Clinical studies have established an association between age of men and inability to have a successful erection. Hence, it was considered to be medical condition affecting only older men. Further research on this topic however proved this hypothesis is wrong. It was revealed that even young men – barely in their 20s – may have this medical condition. Now, additional findings have helped establish the fact that nearly 16% of men – across a wide age group of 20 to 73 years may have this condition. These findings also surmise that nearly 24% of men affected by it may be in the age group of 39 years or less. Fairly advanced studies show some younger men can also have a severe manifest of this condition than even aged people.

So, what is an erection?

When you are sexually turned on, a lot of internal changes occur in your body. One important change is your penis gets to receive a higher amount of blood. So, till the sexual intercourse is over, this extra blood in your penile area plays a vital role in maintaining an erected penis. You will also witness a lot of changes in your body after a sexual performance is complete. After the sexual activity, additional blood exits the penile region causing your penis to revert to its usual shape and size.

When you find it difficult to maintain a stiff and erect penis, the first thing to do is to talk to a specialist or a therapist. The therapist – on his part – may want to confirm the symptoms. This medical condition is confirmed through a battery or panel of tests; the usual ones include blood tests, scan of your penis, assessing your erection overnight, urinalysis, etc. Therapists – not all of them though – may insist on getting a test done on your mental health as well. Upon confirming the medical condition as ED, needful treatment is soon commenced. As mentioned, the most common treatment is prescription of drugs such as Cialis (tadalafil), Viagra (sildenafil), etc.

Which is better – Cialis or Viagra?

These two drugs belong to the same family of medications – namely, PDE-5 inhibitors. PDE-5 sends shrinks vessels and limits supply of blood to your penile area. But, the opposite of this effect is what triggers erection. Cialis and Viagra do that just. They control your body from making PDE-5, and thus ensure this substance does not crash your party. But, how exactly is this done? These two drugs promote high levels of another chemical called cGMP. This is a muscle relaxant and it helps keep your blood vessels in an expanded mode for a longer time.

The major difference between Cialis and Viagra is how long do these drugs stay in your body. Cialis is known to stay back for more than 24 hours. There are instances wherein Cialis has been retained for upto even 34 hours. On the other hand, your body gets rid of Viagra in less than 7 to 8 hours from the time of its last dose. The side effects caused by these two drugs are almost the same; nasal blocks, flushes, etc. So, if you are experiencing these side effects – regardless of which drug you took, it is a good thing to choose Viagra. Why? It is better to take the drug which gets off your system sooner. Viagra is also a better option when you do not want the effects of the PDE-5 inhibitor to last for a longer time.

Sexual habits of men also influence their choice of drug

If you are someone who does not know when a sexual performance may happen; a relatively longstanding drug – like Cialis (tadalafil) – can be handy. This is because the drug has a relatively longer retention period inside your body. So, any time the sexual activity occurs, your body is ready if you had consumed Cialis. On the other hand, if you can precisely tell for sure when you would engage in sexual intercourse, Viagra is the better choice. As mentioned, all effects of Viagra will leave your body in less than 7 hours or so. So, you can take this blue pill at least 45 minutes ahead of a sexual intercourse and be comfortably done with the drug’s effects sooner.

Cialis – because of its long-acting capabilities – can be taken on a daily basis. These daily doses may have far-reaching impacts in the form of your readiness to sexual encounters as well as marked increase in confidence while engaged in sexual performances. If you need a fast-acting drug, then Viagra is a better choice between the two. By being faster among the two, Viagra can be popped as and when you feel like boosting your sexual activity.

You may also want to note Stendra is the fastest acting PDE-5 inhibiting drug. It sports a record time of less than 15 minutes to commence its action and can make you ready for sex.

How do these two drugs fare on side effects they trigger?

The side effects caused by the intake of these two drugs are more or less the same. Their common side effects are flushes, headaches, flu-type signs such as nasal blocks or soreness of your throat, giddiness, nausea, blurring of eyesight, etc. A few other common side effects are sleeplessness, pain in the back, muscular spasms, memory lapses, etc. Rarer side effects – but common to both Cialis and Viagra – include signs resembling a cardiac failure, loss of eyesight, a stretched spell of erection (also known as priapism), convulsions, etc.

While choosing between Cialis and Viagra, the type of side effects experienced also determines the choice. For example, if you experience a headache or flushes when you take Cialis, the right choice then is Viagra; this is because Viagra exits faster than Cialis and can make you come off adverse side effects much sooner. On an absolute scale, men who have taken both the drugs claim Cialis to have relatively lesser side effects than Viagra.

Precautions to be taken

Both these drugs interact with a range of drugs; the most common drug interaction occur with drugs administered for high pressure in your pulmonary arteries (medications like riociguat), alpha-blockers, drugs containing nitrates as well as all other drugs that are taken to alter (lower or increase) your blood pressure. You are also advised not to take either of these drugs if you have any known allergies or hypersensitivity to them.

A few standard precautions are needed if you take either of these two drugs. Seek medical attention if you have pain in your chest, excessive drowsiness or giddiness, loss of eyesight or hearing. In some cases, these drugs may lead you to have an erection for a longer time – say, even for 3 to 4 hours. It is a serious side effect, and needful medical attention is sought without any further delay. The biggest of all precautions is to never consume Cialis and Viagra together. It can lower your blood pressure (hypotension) and may even make you unconscious. The co-administration has also triggered near-death episodes in some men.

In sum, Cialis is known to stay back and work for more than 24 hours while Viagra works for less than 7 to 8 hours from the time of its last dose. On the side effects front, both drugs have almost the same effects such as nasal blocks, flushes, etc. So, if you are experiencing these side effects – regardless of which drug you take, it is a good thing to choose Viagra. But, men who have both the drugs claim Cialis to have relatively lesser side effects than Viagra.

Also, sexual habits can make you decide one drug over another. If you do not know when your sexual performance may happen, a long-acting drug – like Cialis (tadalafil) – is better. But, if you know when your sexual intercourse is likely to happen, Viagra is a better choice.

Hence, both drugs have their own unique properties – despite falling under the same genre. Based on your sexual habits, you are advised to choose a drug that suits your needs.

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