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What are the alternatives to Viagra?

Alternatives to Viagra have been available in the UK since the expiry of Pfizer's patent in June 2013. Many seek medical help for this issue, getting help in the form of Viagra. The market for impotence drugs also offers numerous alternatives including Viagra generics, similar drugs, various therapies and over the counter products. DrEd provides an overview and explains the effect of the individual Viagra alternatives.

Alternative drugs

Cialis

The drug contains the active ingredient Tadalafil which, like Viagra, belongs to the group of phosphodiesterase type 5 inhibitors and is prescribed for erectile dysfunction. Cialis relaxes the blood vessels so that blood can flow more freely to the penis. Its effect can last up to 36 hours, during which time a man can have several erections. Cialis may only be taken after medical consultation and is only available on prescription. Cialis is manufactured by the pharmaceutical company Eli Lilly and Company.

Levitra

The drug contains the active ingredient Vardenafil, and is the best selling potency pill apart from Viagra and Cialis. Levitra takes effect after about 30 minutes and lasts for about 4 hours. The drug  stimulates circulation, making it easier for blood to flow into the penis. Cialis is manufactured by the pharmaceutical company Bayer. Just like Viagra and Cialis, Levitra must be prescribed by a doctor.

Sildenafil

Viagra was originally manufactured by pharmaceutical company Pfizer. Since its patent protection expired, various other companies such as Stada, Hexal and Ratiopharm started offering Sildenafil as a cheaper generic. The drug acts within 30 minutes and lasts for about 4 hours. To be able to buy a sildenafil generic, a prescription is also required.

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Alternative therapies

Injections

Injections into the corpus cavernosum are another alternative to Viagra. A drug is injected into the penis' corpus cavernosum using a syringe, which leads to an erection. The patient self-injects under observation of a urologist. Over the course of several appointments, the dose is adjusted until the resulting erection is satisfactory. From then onwards the patient can inject himself at home. This method, however, can cause side effects; in some cases there is a prolonged erection that needs to be removed by a urologist if it lasts longer than four hours.

Psycho-Sexual therapy

Erectile dysfunction and psychological problems often go hand in hand. Psychological problems can cause a lack of confidence or sexual interest, which then leads to erectile problems. Regardless of your mental state, psychotherapy is incredibly helpful in understanding some of the reasons why you are having difficulties maintaining or achieving an erection and should be considered.  The therapist can help with a series of discussions, exercises and can also involve your partner( if you so wish to understand further any underlying issues or difficulties relating to sex.

Urethra stents

Urethra stents are a form of treatment during which a stent is used to insert a gel directly into the urethra. As a result, the muscle relaxes the penile arteries and erectile dysfunction is resolved. The method is highly effective, however, 30 percent of men can suffer severe pain after the treatment.

Penis prosthesis

If erectile problems cannot be treated with drugs, a penile prosthesis may be the last resort. During an operation, the corpora cavernosa of the penis are removed and replaced by a hydraulic silicone prosthesis.  A penile prosthesis consists of a pump, two cylinders and a liquid container. If the pump is pressed several times, the liquid flows from the reservoir into the cylinder and an erection occurs. To stop the erection, the pump is pressed continuously, so that the liquid runs back into the container. If there are no technical defects or inflammation, a penile prosthesis can remain in the body for a lifetime. If the body rejects the prosthesis however, it must be removed.

Non-prescription alternatives to Viagra

Aphrodisiacs

Although aphrodisiacs usually have great names, tests found them to be ineffective. Be it Potency Wood, Damiana or Spanish Fly, all tested dragées, pills and drops were useless. Men should also not use natural cures for erectile dysfunction. Men with erectile problems should therefore use Viagra or appropriate clinically safe alternatives.

L-arginine

Smaller studies have shown that the active ingredient L-arginine has a positive effect on blood flow. L-Arginine is a semi essential amino acid and is mainly used by bodybuilders. The active substance is contained in certain foods and supplements. However, in order to influence the blood circulation in the blood vessels positively, L-arginine must be taken regularly; erectile function improves after a few days.

 

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