eDrugstore Offers Low Price on Prescription ED Medication Cialis, Tadalafil

Ordering Cialis online through eDrugstore.com can be a convenient and cost-effective alternative to the traditional doctor’s office visit and trip to the pharmacy.

 

In November 2003, the drug Cialis was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for sale as a prescription drug for erectile dysfunction (ED). It was the third of the “big three” ED drugs to be introduced to the market, after Viagra and Levitra. What Cialis had that set it apart from the others was an active ingredient called Tadalafil that has a much longer half-life than Sildenafil Citrate (Viagra’s active ingredient) and Vardenafil (Levitra’s active ingredient).

Because of this, Cialis can be effective for up to 36 hours, and this prolonged action earned Cialis the nickname “The Weekender.” Theoretically, a man could take Cialis on a Friday night, and it could still be effective Sunday morning. This became a big marketing point, eventually putting Cialis sales neck in neck with Viagra, the earliest and most popular ED drug. Another feather in Cialis’s cap is that it is now prescribed in a lower dose as a once-daily medication, allowing men to enjoy a more spontaneous sex life.

Like Viagra and most other prescription drugs, however, the price of Cialis has risen steadily in the nine years it’s been on the market. When it was introduced, pharmacies paid about $8.10 per tablet.

General Drug Price Trends

It has long been the conventional wisdom in the U.S. that prescription drug prices rise at a rate that is higher than general inflation, and repeated studies confirm this.

Around 95% of Americans with health insurance coverage also have some form of prescription drug coverage. However, around 50 million Americans do not have health insurance. The amount insurance companies pay for drugs increases by about 5 to 6% per year, and those with insurance end up covering those increases through higher premiums and co-pays.

Why Pharmaceutical Companies Raise Prices

Part of the answer to why pharmaceutical companies raise prices can be answered with “because they can.” Particularly with “lifestyle” drugs like Cialis, drug manufacturers have been able to raise prices without reaching a price ceiling above which consumers will stop purchasing the drug.

Another reason pharmaceutical companies are able to raise prices successfully is due to increased demand. In the last century, drugs were primarily marketed to doctors. But now, with looser restrictions on prescription drug advertising, prescription medications are marketed directly to consumers, who then ask for the medications from their doctors.

A factor that some analysts believe affects prescription drug prices is the increased use of pharmacy benefits managers, or PBMs, by employers. PBMs are middlemen between consumers, pharmacies, and insurance companies. They negotiate deals with drug companies and pharmacies and in many cases restrict patients’ choice of pharmacies.

PBMs used to be intermediaries that were fee-driven, but over the years, they have actually bought up mail-order pharmacies; and in some cases, have themselves been bought by large pharmacy chains. For example, CVS owns the PBM called CVS Caremark, and this PBM directs customers to, of course, CVS.

Multiple factors affect prescription drug prices, and most of these factors favor drugmakers over consumers.

 

The Effect of Competition on ED Drugs

While lack of competition does keep drug prices high, the presence of competition doesn’t necessarily do much to drive prescription drug prices down. Medications for ED are a case in point. Even though Cialis and Levitra are competitors for Viagra, the prices of all three have gone up dramatically since they were introduced to the market. Insurance benefits generally don’t cover drugs for ED, so men for the most part are paying out of pocket for their ED medications.

Consumers have not stopped buying these medications, despite the fact that the prices have increased dramatically, and that allows the pharmaceutical companies behind Viagra, Cialis, and Levitra to continue to raise prices until they reach a point where men stop buying it. That point has not yet been reached, as sales for these drugs continue to be strong.

Generic Drugs for ED

Cialis is now available as a generic drug in the United States, and that has offered welcome price relief to consumers who want to treat ED without breaking the bank.

While competition may or may not drive down prescription drug costs for consumers, generics do. Once name brand drugs lose their patent protection, which may take up to 20 years, other companies are free to manufacture a chemically-identical version of the drug and market it as a less expensive alternative. The U.S. actually has the most competitive, lowest-price generic prescription drug industry in the world.

Oddly, the fact that generics work so well to lower consumer costs for prescription drugs can have the effect of increasing prices for name brand drugs during the years before patent protection is lost. Drug companies tend to raise prices on their drugs when the patent protection is close to ending, in order to squeeze as many dollars as possible from the drugs before generics come along and start taking over market share.

Your best bet as a consumer is to shop around online and off-line, compare prices on name-brand drugs like Cialis (and generic counterparts), and purchase them through trusted sources. While the online pharmacy sector has become notorious for the presence of disreputable businesses selling counterfeit drugs, there are legitimate online medical facilitators like eDrugstore.com that offer very competitive prices on FDA-approved, name brand drugs like Cialis, Viagra, and FDA-approved generics that are dispensed by licensed pharmacists and conveniently shipped right to your home.

 

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