The number of erectile dysfunction (ED) drug choices just grew by one with approval of Stendra (avanafil) by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). About 30 million men in the United States experience erectile dysfunction.
Stendra is in the same drug class (PDE5 inhibitors) as the other four options, which include Cialis (tadalafil) Levitra (vardenafil), Staxyn (an orally dissolving version of Levitra), and Viagra (sildenafil). All five drugs work by increasing blood flow to the penis, although they differ somewhat in effectiveness, the amount of time it takes before men can achieve an erection, and how long they can maintain that capability.
Clinical trials of avanafil showed the drug was effective as quickly as 15 minutes and that some men had improved erections more than six hours after dosing, noted the FDA. Among men with general erectile dysfunction, 77 percent achieved an erection after taking Stendra compared with 54 percent of men taking a placebo.
Men with diabetes-related erectile dysfunction had similar success: 63 percent achieved an erection after taking Stendra compared with 42 percent who took placebo.
Avanafil shares similar side effects with the other ED drugs; namely, back pain, flushing, headache, and nasal congestion. Rare side effects may include sudden loss of vision or hearing and color vision changes. Men who take nitrates should avoid Stendra because combining the medications can result in a sudden drop in blood pressure.
Read more in our Erectile Dysfunction Health Center.