Sildenafil is a generally effective and well-tolerated medication for erectile dysfunction. For best results, it may be useful to know the correct starting dose, and how this may be adjusted according to your needs.
How does sildenafil work?
Sildenafil works essentially by allowing your arteries to relax and open, by making more of a chemical called cGMP available.
Cells in your arteries release nitric oxide, which, through molecular messengers including cGMP, instructs muscle proteins to relax, so that blood can flow into the penis, which forms an erection. Normally, an enzyme called PDE-5 is present. It breaks down that cGMP, reverses that relaxation, and your erection subsides. Inhibiting this enzyme with sildenafil, a PDE-5 inhibitor, helps maintain that erection instead.
What is the optimal dosage of sildenafil?
The recommended starting dose of sildenafil is 50mg, taken once a day. You should not take more than one dose in a 24 hour period. Your chances of possible side effects increase if you exceed the recommended dose.
If you have taken the 50mg dose and you feel the effects are not strong enough, or are too strong, you should talk to your doctor or pharmacist who may suggest a different dose or alternative treatment. You should not try to change the dose without appropriate advice and supervision.
As a safety note, the manufacturers recommend that you do not take sildenafil film-coated tablets in combination with sildenafil oro-dispersible tablets. These effectively constitute the same medication and taking both would be exceeding the recommended dosage.
The bottom line
Sildenafil is an effective and generally well-tolerated treatment for erectile dysfunction. It is important to start with the correct dose, and only change your dose under the advice and supervision of your doctor or appropriate clinician. For those who aren’t happy with the effects of sildenafil, there are alternatives. Some may find that the longer-acting effect of tadalafil more satisfactory.