Viagra vs Cialis – whats the difference?

Viagra vs Cialis

Viagra was the drug that changed the world in 1998 and revolutionised treatment for men with erectile dysfunction (ED). Cialis was the second ED drug brought to market and earned the nickname The Weekend Pill as it’s duration of action is 36 hours (Viagra lasts for 4 hours). Other tablets to treat ED are Levitra and Spedra.

Viagra has been ‘off patent’ since 2013 which means legal copies of the drug can now be sold in the UK as generics called sildenafil, and there are now many brands of sildenafil available. The patent for Cialis expired November 2017 and lower cost generic Tadalafil is also now available.

Both treatments are available on prescription only following an erectile dysfunction consultation.

Compare Viagra and Cialis

Studies suggest patients and their partners have a preference for tadalafil (Cialis) over sildenafil (Viagra) for the treatment of erectile dysfunction.

Viagra and Cialis comparison data
  Viagra Cialis
Chemical name Sildenafil Tadalafil
Starting dose 50mg 10mg
Low dose 25mg 2.5mg–5mg
Maximum dose 100mg 20mg
Onset time 40 minutes 30 minutes
Duration of action 4 hours 36 hours
Common side effects Headache, palpitation, indigestion, dizziness, congestion, flushing, blurred vision Headache, muscle pain, indigestion, congestion, flushing, dizziness
Cautions and interactions Any nitrate-based medication, low blood pressure, retinitis pigmentosa, recent myocardial infarction, angina Any nitrate-based medication, low blood pressure, recent myocardial infarction, angina
Patient leaflet View PDF View PDF
UK patent Expired June 2013 Expires November 2017
Branded price From £5.13 per tablet From £2.29 per tablet
Generic price From 97 per tablet From 82p per tablet
Available on NHS Yes as generic sildenafil (usually 4 tablets per month) Not usually

Video: Viagra vs. Cialis: Little Blue Pill Is Losing Big

Eric Chemi from Bloomberg discusses two of the most popular erectile dysfunction drugs: Which will become the dominant medication in coming years, Viagra or Cialis?
Watch the December 2012 video below.

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