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Value per Dose: Comparison of Generics for Viagra, Cialis, & Levitra

The arrival of generic erectile dysfunction drugs has broadened the treatment options available to men with ED. Here are some tips to help you pick the drug that offers the highest value per dose. 

Smart shoppers compare competing products to determine which delivers the biggest bang for their buck. When shopping for erectile dysfunction drugs, a good measure for comparison shopping is each medication’s value per dose.

Since December 2017, U.S. consumers have had more ED drugs to choose from. That month witnessed the introduction of the first generic alternatives to Viagra (sildenafil citrate), the little blue pill that revolutionized the treatment of ED. In the intervening months, generic equivalents of both Cialis (tadalafil) and Levitra (vardenafil hydrochloride) have come on the market.

What’s Your Drug’s Half-Life?

To compare these generic equivalents on the basis of value per dose, we first need to establish each drug’s half-life — the length of time it takes for the concentration of the drug’s active ingredient in the blood to drop to 50 percent.

Then taking the average price of each of these three generic ED medications, we can divide that price by its half-life to determine the approximate cost per hour for the relief the drug provides. For the purposes of our study, we have calculated value per dose based on the cost of a single recommended starting dose (RSD) as derived from the purchase of 10 maximum-strength doses of the drug that are then split in half to yield 20 RSDs.

GENERIC ED MEDICATIONAVERAGE PRICE PER RSD*AVERAGE HALF-LIFEAVERAGE COST PER HOUR OF RELIEF
SILDENAFIL$19.884 HOURS$4.97
VARDENAFIL$29.255 HOURS$5.85
TADALAFIL$29.0017.5 HOURS$1.66
*RSD: Recommended starting dose

As you can see from the accompanying table, the winner in terms of value per dose is clearly tadalafil, the generic equivalent of Cialis. With a half-life of 17.5 hours, it is the longest-lasting of the ED generics. However, unless you’re planning a romantic weekend or a marathon love-making session, it may not be the best buy for you.

For Some, Sildenafil Is the Best Bet

Sildenafil, the generic equivalent of Viagra, has the lowest average price per recommended starting dose, which for this drug is 50 milligrams. If you need a medication to overcome symptoms of ED for occasional sexual activity, sildenafil is probably your wisest choice.

Although somewhat higher in price, vardenafil, the generic equivalent of Levitra, is a good choice for men who fail to get the desired results from sildenafil. All of these oral ED drugs, known collectively as PDE5 inhibitors, work in much the same way. However, their differing chemical compositions can make one pill preferable to others in terms of how quickly it takes effect, the side effects it may cause, and the way in which a given individual responds to it.

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No matter which of these generic ED drugs represents the best value for you, longtime online facilitator eDrugstore.com offers a convenient way to order these medications online. In business since 1998, eDrugstore is headquartered in Tempe, Arizona. It stocks a full range of ED medications, including not just these generic ED drugs but also all five brand-name products — Viagra, Levitra, Cialis, Staxyn, and Stendra.

For men who don’t have a prescription for their ED drug, eDrugstore has got you covered. It can set up a complimentary online consultation with a licensed U.S. physician who can authorize a prescription if appropriate. To get started, visit eDrugstore’s Erectile Dysfunction page.