Sildenafil is the widely-used drug for Erectile Dysfunction therapy and it is also used for the treatment of Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension. This drug is also known as the Phosphodiesterase type 5 inhibitor (PDE5) which improves the circulation of blood in the body by temporarily enlarging the diameter of the blood vessels. To accomplish this, Sildenafil relaxes the muscles surrounding the blood vessels decreasing the pressure in the walls letting the blood flow freely inside the body. This works very well for ED patients as the improved rate of blood circulation will help them achieve stronger and sustained erections with the constant, increased blood flow to the penis.
Sildenafil Mechanism of Action
For PAH, Sildenafil works in the same way by dilating the arteries temporarily, allowing the blood to flow freely from the heart to the lungs with the reduced pressure. The high blood pressure that is caused PAH makes it difficult for the blood to pass through the rigid arteries that’s why Sildenafil is needed, to ease the tension in these blood passageways making the circulation easier and the blood pressure lower.
There is no doubt about Sildenafil’s safety. It is approved by the United States Food and Drug Administration (USFDA) and has the green light for safe use. But this drug, as safe as it is, still comes with instructions for use and some precautions. And speaking about precautions, what are the Sildenafil’s contraindication, what are the drugs that shouldn’t be taken with it? In this short article, we will discuss the drugs that cause adverse and harmful effects when taken with Sildenafil.
Viagra Drug Interactions
First on the list are the drugs called Nitrates. Nitrates are commonly used for patients with Angina Pectoris or heart pains. These drugs have the same effect as Sildenafil in dilating the blood vessels, only that Nitrates are specifically made for the heart, dilating the arteries and reducing the stress on its muscles:
The action of Nitrates in the blood vessels are no different from Sildenafil. It temporarily enlarges the diameter of the arteries to improve the blood flow to the heart, relieving the painful symptoms experienced by the patient. The problem with taking Nitrates with Sildenafil is that their effects are not separate and will stack up, causing the blood pressure to drop to fatal levels because of the extreme dilation of the blood vessels. Without the normal blood pressure, the body will have difficulty in circulating the blood back to the heart depriving its muscles of much-needed oxygen and may cause a heart attack.
The next drug on the list of medicines that are bad with Sildenafil is the Alpha-blockers. These drugs are mainly used for the treatment of high blood pressure (hypertension) and for Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH), the enlargement of the prostate glands in men.
Alpha-blockers are drugs that block the transmission of particular nerve impulses. Some of the nerve endings in the body release a chemical called noradrenaline when stimulated. In turn, it then stimulates the alpha-adrenergic receptors which are small cellular structures found in various parts of the body including the blood vessels, muscles, and the heart. Various effects on the body result when these receptors are stimulated. The alpha-blocker drugs prevent the stimulation of these tiny structures by attaching themselves to the alpha-adrenergic receptors, causing the relaxation of the muscles surrounding the blood vessels.
Hypotension or extreme drop in the blood pressure is also the result of taking this drug with Sildenafil. Patients with ED at the same time with their hypertension and BPH are not prohibited from taking alpha-blockers, on the condition that they should only take one of either drug in separate occasions, strictly not at the same time or day.
Amlodipine 10mg & 5mg
The next drug to be avoided when taking Sildenafil is Amlodipine. This medicine is also known as a calcium channel blocker which also relaxes and widens the blood vessels to improve blood flow. Amlodipine is also used for hypertension treatment, Angina Pectoris and conditions caused by coronary heart disease. Hypotension is also the risk that comes with using this drug with Sildenafil and patients are strictly warned of its negative effects when taken carelessly.
Lastly, patients who are on Sildenafil medication should avoid consuming alcohol or should at least just consume it in little amounts. Alcohol is also known to drop the blood pressure by making the blood thinner and excessive consumption of wine will dull the effects of Sildenafil, especially if used for Erectile Dysfunction. Since alcohol and sex are almost inseparable for many people, most doctors do not prohibit it totally but only advise moderate consumptions of liquor so that Sildenafil would still be able to perform its task in the body.
Who Should Not Take Viagra
Viagra can be taken by anyone who has Erectile Dysfunction as long as it is prescribed by their physicians. It is necessary for patients to be first checked by the doctors to avoid adverse effects like allergic reactions to the medicine. The patient’s medical history should also be reviewed by the doctor so that any other ailments that the patient might have will be known and its complications with Sildenafil use be avoided.
Taking Sildenafil has its benefits but it also has some minor side effects that come with use which usually goes away after the body adjusts to the medication. But these drugs that are Sildenafil’s contraindication should always be kept in mind by the patient, to avoid otherwise fatal results. The patient’s physician’s advice is most helpful when it comes to the other do’s and don’ts since they have the complete knowledge of the patient’s medical history. Other adverse drug effects can be avoided as well by following the doctor’s advice religiously concerning the use of these medications.