When people hear the word “Tadalafil”, they may not immediately recognize it. However, mentioning “Tadalafil” in the same sentence as “Cialis” will get an immediate reaction of recognition. That’s because Cialis is the more popular brand name for Tadalafil, and is used in the treatment of Erectile Dysfunction (popularly called ED) as well as Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension.
What is Tadalafil?
Tadalafil is the active ingredient in the popularly known drug Cialis, which is used to manage the symptoms of ED. It belongs to the group of medical compounds known as Phosphodiesterase 5 inhibitors – also popularly called PDE5 inhibitors. As an “inhibitor”, Tadalafil helps to inhibit the affects of cyclic GMP (cGMP) in the. PDE5 is largely responsible for constricting the flow of blood to the penis, which then results in either poor or soft erections, or erections that can’t be sustained.
But PDE5 inhibitors are also used to prevent the impact of the enzyme PDE5 in other areas of the body, notably in the walls of the lungs. Tadalafil may therefore also be prescribed to deal with conditions such as pulmonary hypertension.
How do Phosphodiesterase 5 inhibitors help?
When it comes to its sexual function, a man’s penis needs to be erect in order to perform well. The penis is supported by a collection of muscles, just as many other limbs of our bodies are. And just as those limbs depend on blood flow to power the muscles, which in turn activate the limb, the penis requires a sustained flow of blood to become erect.
Cyclic GMP (cGMP) can prevent the penis from receiving the flow of blood that creates, sustains and maintains an erection. And when there is no adequate flow of blood to the penis, men can’t perform well, sexually. That’s what primarily causes Erectile Dysfunction. Phosphodiesterase 5 (PDE5) inhibitors help to combat those conditions to help relieve ED symptoms.
PDE5 is not just used in brand name ED medication such as Viagra, Cialis and Levitra only. There are a number of generic ED medications that also have PDE5 inhibitors as their active ingredients. For instance, Adcirca (used for treating Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension) is another FDA approved drug that also uses Tadalafil as its active PDE5 ingredient.
Other popular drugs are also available that have Phosphodiesterase 5 (PDE5) inhibitors as their active ingredients. Amongst them are Zenegra, Stendra and Staxyn. All of these drugs work in a similar way – by increasing the flow of blood to the penile muscles.
However, before exercising the option to choose ED medication, men experiencing symptoms of ED should carefully check for other ingredients (not just the active one), as well as the specific characteristic of the drug being chosen. Length of an erection, side effects of the drug, frequency of dosage etc. all go into making the decision to go with one option over the other.