levitra discontinued

Why Was Levitra Discontinued? [+ Levitra Alternatives]

Highlights 

  • Bayer Healthcare Pharmaceuticals has discontinued the erectile dysfunction medication Levitra.
  • According to the FDA, Levitra was not discontinued for safety or efficacy reasons.
  • Vardenafil, the generic form of Levitra, is still available nationwide.
  • Levitra users can explore other alternatives, as well, such as Viagra or Cialis.
  • Only buy your medications from legitimate, trustworthy sources like eDrugstore.

If you’re looking for Levitra alternatives, then you’ve noticed that brand-name Levitra is no longer available. If you’ve been wondering why it’s been discontinued, you’re not alone. On August 26, 2022, Respira Therapeutics submitted a citizen petition to the FDA, requesting clarification.

So, why was Levitra discontinued, and what are your Levitra alternatives?

The FDA’s Take on Why Bayer Discontinued Levitra

The initiative to discontinue Levitra belonged to Bayer Healthcare Pharmaceuticals Inc., the former patent holder. The FDA didn’t have a hand in the move, and Bayer is tight-lipped about its reasons, but they have removed Levitra from their product catalog. The same is true of Staxyn, which is another form of brand-name vardenafil.  

The FDA issued a notice about the withdrawal of 5 milligram, 10 milligram, and 20 milligram Levitra tablets, stating that the drug was not withdrawn for effectiveness or safety reasons. 

From the perspective of the FDA, Levitra worked and was safe to use for the treatment of erectile dysfunction.

The FDA’s perspective is supported by the communication between the FDA and Respira Therapeutics, which included an acknowledgment letter, an interim response letter, and a response letter from the former to the latter. 

Levitra’s Side Effects Didn’t Play a Role in Its Discontinuation

In rare cases, Levitra could cause severe side effects like a sudden loss of vision in one or both eyes. All PDE5 inhibitors can cause such side effects, however. Like other PDE5 inhibitors, Levitra may also contribute to dangerously low blood pressure when taken together with blood pressure medications. 

Levitra causes few side effects that Viagra doesn’t, but it may cause gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) and a heart rhythm condition called long-QT syndrome. Viagra is not known to cause these side effects. 

Researchers had established that Levitra’s benefits far exceeded the rare problems these side effects may have caused. Neither played a role in the discontinuation of the drug. 

We Can Only Speculate on Why Bayer Discontinued Levitra

Until further notice from Bayer, we can only speculate that they may have discontinued Levitra due to supply chain or economic reasons. With its patent expired in 2018, and the availability of generic vardenafil, it’s also possible that Bayer may not have profited enough from Levitra to continue to produce it. 

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Do Generic Vardenafil Pills Still Exist?

The discontinuation of Levitra does not affect generic vardenafil. In its notice, the FDA mentioned that it would not withdraw its approval of vardenafil or deny the approval of new vardenafil-based medications. molecule

Vardenafil pills for erectile dysfunction are still available.

Pharmaceutical companies can continue to make generic vardenafil pills and market them for the FDA-approved purpose of erectile dysfunction treatment. 

The FDA has placed the 20 milligram version of Levitra on its Approved Drug Products with Therapeutic Equivalence Evaluations list as a Discontinued Drug Product. 

Beware of Counterfeit Levitra

Now that Levitra has been discontinued, if you find an advertisement for it, it’s likely to be an expired, or worse, counterfeit product. While expired Levitra won’t hurt you, expired products lose potency over time so can be a waste of your hard-earned money.

Fake ED pills are different. ED medications have long been an attractive target for criminals, who make them in unregulated, often unsanitary, underground shops, using dubious ingredients. Potentially deadly ingredients like rat poison have found their way into fake ED pills. 

The FDA has found so many sources of fake and tainted sexual enhancement products that they keep a running list of offenders.

So, what can you do to avoid counterfeit ED pills? Here’s what we recommend:

  • Don’t buy or accept medications with incomplete or damaged packaging.
  • Never buy medications from dubious sources like street vendors.
  • When you go on vacation, take enough medication with you so you don’t have to buy any while away.
  • Never buy prescription-only medications from sources that sell them without requiring a prescription. 

What Are the Staxyn and Levitra Alternatives?

Again, people who took Levitra or Staxyn for erectile dysfunction can still rely on generic vardenafil. 

If you opt for vardenafil, keep an eye on the dosage. If you were a Staxyn user, remember that Levitra and Staxyn were never interchangeable. Staxyn was an orally disintegrating tablet, while Levitra was a film-coated tablet meant to be swallowed. Be sure to follow the prescribing instructions.

Other Levitra alternatives include the following FDA-approved medications: 

Viagra (sildenafil): The original “little blue pill,” clinical studies show that it’s effective for 90% of men. 

Cialis (tadalafil): Often referred to as “the weekend pill,” Cialis is the longest-acting PDE5i, lasting up to 36 hours for most men. It tends to have a slightly lower risk of side effects than Viagra, Stendra, or vardenafil. 

Tadalafil for daily use: You might also consider the low-dose form of generic Cialis, which allows men to be ready for intimacy any time. Although it’s taken every day, low-dose Cialis has the best side effect profile of the PDE5I’s.

Stendra (avanafil): Stenda may be a good choice for men who suffer from Viagra headaches, as its risk for this side effect is significantly lower than Viagra’s.

Are Levitra Alternatives as Effective as Levitra?

Viagra and Cialis are PDE5 inhibitors that work exactly like Levitra and vardenafil, by boosting blood flow to the penis. They also cause mostly similar side effects, but vardenafil, the active ingredient in Levitra, is more potent. 

MedicationHeadacheFlushingDyspepsiaNasal CongestionBack painDizzinessRash
Vardenafil (Levitra)14%10%7%4%3%2%2%
Sildenafil (Viagra)16%10%7%4%3%2%2%
Tadalafil (Cialis)12%4%4%3%2%1%1%
Tadalafil for Daily Use (Cialis)10%3%3%2%1%1%1%
Avanafil (Stendra)11%4%2%3%1%1%1%

Percentage of clinical trial participants experiencing side effects
Sources: FDA Prescribing Information 

But what about effectiveness — how do the Levitra alternatives stack up? According to user reviews at Drugs.com, both Viagra and Cialis are more effective for ED than Levitra. Stendra didn’t fare quite as well, but many Stendra users say it worked well for them and they had fewer side effects than with other ED medications they had tried. 

LevitraCialisViagraStendra
Number of Reviews13655050363
Positive Reviews75%82%78%47%
Negative Reviews11%9%13%38%

Based on this data, we can conclude that both Cialis and Viagra are viable alternatives for the discontinued Levitra, and Stendra can also be a good choice for many individuals. You can buy all three medications online from legitimate sources like eDrugstore. 

Ready to Reclaim Your Erections?

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You can take the first step toward more youthful erections by getting your FDA-approved and scientifically proven ED drugs from eDrugstore. We carry name-brand Viagra and Cialis, as well as their generic equivalents. 

doctors recommend Levitra alternatives

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Disclaimer: This article provides general information about health and related topics but is not intended as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.

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