Cialis vs. Viagra: What’s the difference?

Erectile dysfunction
Cialis vs. Viagra: What’s the difference?

There are a lot of commercials touting medicines for erectile dysfunction (ED).

But how do you know the difference between them? Two of the most well-known drugs for impotence are Cialis and Viagra. Here are some of the ways they differ.

Viagra

The brand name for sildenafil, Viagra is made by Pfizer. Like Cialis, Viagra belongs to a class of drugs known as PDE5 inhibitors.

Because PDE5 inhibitors rely on the natural release of nitric oxide during sexual arousal, they only work during sexual stimulation.

Viagra was approved by the FDA in 1998 and, according to Drugs.com, has a slightly higher effectiveness (84%) compared to Cialis (81%). Viagra shouldn’t be taken with food, as high-fat meals can diminish its effectiveness.

In general, Viagra works within 30 minutes and lasts four to five hours. A standard dosage of 50 mg is typically taken approximately one hour before sex. The most commonly reported side effects are flushing, indigestion and headache.

Cialis

The brand name for tadalafil, Cialis is made by Eli Lilly. It was approved for ED in 2003, but was actually the third PDEF5 inhibitor (Levitra was second).

Cialis can be taken once a day at a smaller dosage (10 mg). It generally starts to work in 16 to 45 minutes, and can last up to 36 hours. It’s not effected by food and can be used to treat a condition called benign prostatic hyperplasia.

Men with kidney or liver problems or those who don’t tolerate the side effects—such as indigestion and headache— may need to take a smaller dosage of Cialis (5 mg).

Men who have had a stroke or heart attack within the past six months should not take Cialis.

Cost

Per tablet, Viagra costs about $24 (for 50 mg) and $35 (for 100 mg).

Cialis runs about $8.50 for a 5 mg tablet and $28 for a 20 mg tablet.

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