Side-effect profile of sildenafil citrate (Viagra) in clinical practice.Urology. 2000 Sep 01; 56(3):474-6.U
Sildenafil citrate (Viagra) has been shown to be an effective treatment for erectile dysfunction. Initial studies reported a high tolerability and low incidence of certain characteristic adverse reactions. We sought to evaluate the incidence of side effects of sildenafil citrate, independent of industry support and constraints, utilizing a heterogeneous cohort of patients from a university-based practice.
A prospective, open-label, flexible-dose study of 256 patients treated with sildenafil citrate for erectile dysfunction was performed at a single institution. The patients were questioned explicitly about the occurrence of headache, flushing, dyspepsia, nasal congestion, visual changes, and other side effects.
The adverse reactions most commonly observed were flushing (30.8%), headache (25. 4%), nasal congestion (18.7%), and heartburn (10.5%). All events were short lived and mild in nature. In the present study, 31.6% of patients experienced one or more adverse events. However, no one withdrew from the study because of the severity of these events. There was a significant association between higher doses and the occurrence of side effects.
The incidence of adverse events attributable to sildenafil citrate may be higher than initially reported, but an explanation may be the methodology of data collection and the industry-independent nature of this study. The side-effect profile is dose related and mild. Sildenafil citrate remains a safe and well-tolerated treatment for erectile dysfunction.