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sildenafil (oral) (cont.)

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before taking oral sildenafil (Revatio, Viagra)?

Do not take sildenafil if you are also using a nitrate drug for chest pain or heart problems. This includes nitroglycerin (Nitrostat, Nitrolingual, Nitro-Dur, Nitro-Bid, and others), isosorbide dinitrate (Dilatrate-SR, Isordil, Sorbitrate), and isosorbide mononitrate (Imdur, ISMO, Monoket). Nitrates are also found in some recreational drugs such as amyl nitrate or nitrite ("poppers"). Taking sildenafil with a nitrate medicine can cause a sudden and serious decrease in blood pressure.

To make sure sildenafil is safe for you, tell your doctor about your other medical conditions, especially:

Sildenafil can decrease blood flow to the optic nerve of the eye, causing sudden vision loss. This has occurred in a small number of people taking sildenafil, most of whom also had heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, or certain pre-existing eye problems, and in those who smoke or are over 50 years old. It is not clear whether sildenafil is the actual cause of vision loss. Stop using sildenafil and get emergency medical help if you have sudden vision loss.

FDA pregnancy category B: This medication is not expected to be harmful to an unborn baby. Do not use sildenafil without telling your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant during treatment.

It is not known if sildenafil passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Do not use this medication without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

Do not give this medication to anyone under 18 years old without medical advice.

How should I take oral sildenafil (Revatio, Viagra)?

Take exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Do not take in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended. Follow the directions on your prescription label.

Revatio is usually taken three times each day, about 4 to 6 hours apart.

Viagra is usually taken only when needed, 30 minutes to 1 hour before sexual activity. You may take it up to 4 hours before sexual activity. Do not take Viagra more than once per day.

Viagra can help you have an erection when sexual stimulation occurs. An erection will not occur just by taking a pill. Follow your doctor's instructions.

During sexual activity, if you become dizzy or nauseated, or have pain, numbness, or tingling in your chest, arms, neck, or jaw, stop and call your doctor right away. You could be having a serious side effect of sildenafil.

Store at room temperature away from moisture and heat.

Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

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