Farrinstitute is reader-supported. We may receive commissions on purchases made through links on our site.

Sildenafil vs Viagra: Unraveling the Key Differences, Dosage, and Cost for Optimal Results


Sildenafil vs Viagra

Sildenafil vs Viagra: Unraveling the Key Differences, Dosage, and Cost for Optimal Results

Erectile dysfunction (ED) is a common problem affecting millions of men worldwide, and its prevalence has increased significantly over the past few decades. Various medications have been developed in response to the growing demand for effective ED treatments, including Sildenafil and Viagra. 

These two medications are often mentioned interchangeably, but critical differences can impact their effectiveness, dosage, and cost. This article aims to provide an in-depth comparison of Sildenafil vs Viagra and alternative treatment options to help readers make an informed choice.

Get BlueChew 1 month free of the active plan or $20 off any plan

Introduction to Sildenafil vs Viagra

Sildenafil, also known as Sildenafil Citrate, is the active ingredient in Viagra and its generic counterparts. It belongs to a class of drugs called phosphodiesterase type 5 (PDE5) inhibitors, which relax blood vessels and increase blood flow to the penis, thus enabling an erection when sexually stimulated. [1] 

Viagra, on the other hand, is a brand name for the medication containing Sildenafil Citrate, developed and marketed by Pfizer. Since its introduction in 1998, Viagra has become one of the world’s most popular and widely prescribed ED medications. [2]

Interestingly, Pfizer chemists first came across sildenafil while looking for a way to lower blood pressure. Sildenafil initially appeared to be a viable treatment for angina, a type of chest discomfort, due to its vasodilation effects, but the results weren’t sufficient to warrant additional research. [2]

A kind of high blood pressure that can affect the arteries in the lungs, pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH), is occasionally treated with sildenafil. 

With the expiration of Pfizer’s patent for Viagra in 2012, generic versions of the drug containing Sildenafil Citrate have become available, providing consumers with more affordable options. However, many are still unsure about the differences between Sildenafil vs Viagra and how to choose the proper medication.

Here is a quick look at where to buy Sildenafil online cheap:

  • Best Sildenafil Chewable: BlueChew
  • Best overall: Hims
  • Best for competitive prices: Rex MD
  • Best Consultation services: Roman
  • Best for affordability: Elan MD

Generic Viagra vs Sildenafil: What’s the difference?

One of the main differences between Sildenafil vs Viagra is that Sildenafil refers to the generic version of the medication. At the same time, Viagra is the brand name under which Pfizer markets the medication. 

Regarding their chemical composition and mechanism of action, generic Sildenafil tablets and Viagra are identical, as both contain Sildenafil Citrate as the active ingredient.

Find out more about generic Viagra 

The primary advantage of choosing generic Sildenafil vs Viagra is the cost, with generic versions typically being significantly less expensive. This is because generic drug manufacturers do not have to invest in costly research and development, marketing, and branding efforts like the original manufacturer (in this case, Pfizer). 

As a result, they can offer the medication at a lower price without compromising its efficacy, safety, or quality.

Get BlueChew 1 month free of the active plan or $20 off any plan

Sildenafil Citrate vs Viagra: Understanding the Active Ingredient

Sildenafil Citrate is the active ingredient in both Viagra and its generic versions. It is responsible for the drug’s ability to treat erectile dysfunction by inhibiting the PDE5 enzyme, which breaks down cyclic guanosine monophosphate (cGMP). This, in turn, increases blood flow to the penis, enabling an erection when sexually stimulated. [3] 

While the active ingredient is the same in both Viagra vs Sildenafil, the inactive ingredients, or excipients, may vary between different products. These excipients, such as binders, fillers, and coloring agents, do not affect the drug’s efficacy but can impact factors like the medication’s appearance, taste, and shelf life. 

Some people may also experience allergic reactions to specific excipients in a particular brand or generic drug version, so checking the medication’s full list of ingredients before use is essential.

Sildenafil vs Viagra Dosage Comparison 

The dosage of Sildenafil vs Viagra is another area where differences may arise. Both medications are available in various strengths, typically 25mg to 100mg. The recommended starting dose for most patients is 50mg, taken approximately one hour before sexual activity. [1]
Related: How much Sildenafil is too much

Viagra and “generic Viagra” include the active chemical sildenafil. However, those aren’t the only medications that do. The FDA has approved sildenafil to treat pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH), a rare lung condition, under the brand name Revatio. [4]

Viagra vs Sildenafil are available in three doses to treat ED: 25 mg, 50 mg, and 100 mg. Revatio is available in 20 mg dosage form and is occasionally used off-label to treat ED.

However, depending on individual factors such as age, weight, overall health, and response to the medication, a healthcare professional may recommend adjusting the dosage. It is crucial to follow the prescribed dosage and not to exceed one dose within 24 hours, as taking too much Sildenafil can increase the risk of side effects. 

Additionally, it is essential to note that neither Viagra nor generic Sildenafil should be taken with certain other medications, particularly nitrates, and alpha-blockers, as this can lead to potentially dangerous drops in blood pressure.

Viagra vs Sildenafil – Where to Buy It Online?

There are several reputable online platforms where you can purchase Viagra and generic sildenafil. Some of the most popular options include

BlueChew – Best for Sildenafil Chewable

BlueChew Sildenafil

BlueChew is a U.S.-based online subscription service that delivers ED medication directly to your doorstep. BlueChew provides chewable tablets of three ED medications, namely Sildenafil, Tadalafil, and Vardenafil, the active ingredients in Viagra, Cialis, and Levitra, accordingly.

RELATED: BlueChew Review 

These chewables are great for individuals who find it challenging to swallow commercially available pills, those reluctant to visit a doctor in person, those seeking more confidence in their sexual performance, and those who find difficulty in swallowing pills.

Upon signing up for the service, you are connected to a licensed medical provider who conducts a digital consultation to understand your symptoms and medical history. If the medical provider approves ED treatment, a prescription for one of BlueChew’s medications is issued.

  • Chewable tablet format.
  • No need for an in-person doctor visit.
  • Discreet delivery.
  • More affordable than brand-name ED medications.
  • Manufactured in the United States.

Get BlueChew 1 month free of the active plan or $20 off any plan

Hims – Best Overall for Sildenafil vs Viagra

Hims, a telemedicine platform that offers a range of men’s health products, including Viagra and generic sildenafil. They provide online consultations with licensed healthcare providers to determine the most suitable treatment option for your needs.

  • Free Online consultation with licensed healthcare experts;
  • Brand-name Viagra and Cialis;
  • Generic Viagra and Cialis; 
  • Personal details are encrypted and fully confidential;
  • Free ongoing care from licensed practitioners;
  • Free shipping;
  • Prescription provided within 24 hours of consulting with licensed practitioners;
  • Offers Generic medication for Viagra at $3 per dose, which is about 90% less than brand name Viagra.

Start with free online consultation and get free discreet shipping at Hims

Rex MD – Best for Competitive Prices

Rex MD is another telemedicine platform that offers Viagra and generic sildenafil. They provide a discreet and convenient way to obtain ED medications, with online consultations and secure shipping.Find out more in our Rex MD review.

  • Free delivery FDA- approved drugs like Viagra and Cialis;
  • Fast consultation with a licensed healthcare expert;
  • Two night-free generic Viagra samples;
  • Non-brand name ED pills with FDA-approved active ingredients;
  • Free Video, chat or call consultations with licensed physicians;
  • Cost-free standard USPS shipping;  
  • Free assessment with a board-certified physician;
  • Overnight shipping at an extra cost;
  • No-cost ongoing medical support for prescription holders.

Click here to get 2-night free generic Viagra samples at Rex MD

Roman – Best for Consultation Services

Roman is an online provider for men that offers a range of treatments, including Viagra and generic sildenafil. They provide online consultations with licensed healthcare providers and deliver medications directly to your door.

Read our Roman ED review for more.

  • Free online consultation;
  • Affordable ED treatments start at just $4 per dose;
  • Branded and generic Viagra;
  • Branded and generic Cialis;
  • Unlimited follow-ups with US-licensed physicians after prescription;
  • Free shipping for 2-4 days;
  • $15 off prescribed ED treatments. 

Click to get $15 off prescribed Roman ED treatments 

Elan MD – Best for Affordability

Elan MD is another online provider specializing in men’s health and offers a range of ED medications, including Viagra and generic sildenafil. They provide secure and discreet shipping, ensuring your privacy is protected.

  • Free online consultation;
  • Generic and brand Viagra; 
  • Generic and brand Cialis; 
  • 100% free consultation with licensed physicians (8 am-8 pm);  
  • Free trial (cancellable within 14 before being charged for a 30-day prescription);
  • Highly responsive support;
  • Free discreet shipping in all states except Hawaii;
  • Automatic free shipping every month;
  • Unlimited access to follow-up services after receiving medication;
  • Free shipping in 2-3 days;
  • Friendly cancellation policy. 

Here you can check the best deals for Elan MD

Viagra vs Sildenafil: Analyzing Efficacy and Side Effects

There is no significant difference between Viagra vs Sildenafil, as both medications contain the same active ingredient. Clinical trials have shown that Sildenafil is effective in treating erectile dysfunction in approximately 70% of cases, regardless of whether it is marketed under the Viagra brand name or as a generic. [5]

As both Viagra and generic sildenafil contain the same active ingredient, they share similar side effects. Some common side effects include

Sildenafil side effects infographic

  • Headache;
  • Flushing;
  • Upset stomach;
  • Dizziness;
  • Nasal congestion. [5]

These side effects are generally mild and temporary, resolving independently within a few hours. However, some individuals may experience more severe side effects, such as

  • Sudden vision loss;
  • Sudden hearing loss;
  • Chest pain;
  • Shortness of breath;
  • A painful erection lasting longer than four hours. [5]

If any of these severe side effects occur, it is essential to seek immediate medical attention.

It is worth noting that individual experiences with Sildenafil vs Viagra may vary, and some people may prefer one version of the medication over another. This could be due to differences in inactive ingredients or personal preferences related to brand loyalty and packaging.

Experience the BlueChew active plan free for a month

Who Can Take ED Medications?

For any of these three tablets to be effective, a man must have erectile dysfunction and be able to take sildenafil citrate safely. Men cannot use sildenafil citrate if they have a history of certain illnesses, including liver failure, or are taking certain drugs, like nitrates. [6]

The Cost of Sildenafil vs Viagra: Making an Informed Choice

One of the most significant differences between Sildenafil vs Viagra is the cost. Generic Sildenafil is much more affordable than branded Viagra, with prices for the generic version ranging from 80% to 90% lower than those for the branded medication. 

This price difference can considerably impact the overall cost of ED treatment, particularly for those requiring long-term or frequent medication use. While the lower cost of generic Sildenafil may be an attractive option for many, it is essential to ensure that the medication is purchased from a reputable source. 

Counterfeit drugs, which may contain harmful ingredients or incorrect dosages, are a significant concern in the ED medication market. Always purchase Sildenafil or Viagra from a trusted pharmacy or online retailer that requires a valid prescription.

Sildenafil vs Tadalafil and Levitra vs Viagra: Alternative Treatment Options

In addition to Sildenafil vs Viagra, other ED medications are available, such as Tadalafil (Cialis) and Vardenafil (Levitra). These drugs also belong to the PDE5 inhibitor class and work similarly to Sildenafil in treating erectile dysfunction.

The primary difference between Sildenafil vs Tadalafil is the duration of action, with Tadalafil lasting up to 36 hours compared to Sildenafil’s 4-6 hour window. This longer-lasting effect has earned Tadalafil the nickname “the weekend pill,” as it allows for more spontaneity in sexual activity.

On the other hand, when we talk about Levitra vs Viagra in terms of duration of action but may be a better option for some men who experience side effects with Sildenafil. It is essential to discuss your specific needs and medical history with a healthcare professional to determine the best ED pills for you.

Tadalafil

Cialis®, or Tadalafil, is an ED drug with long-lasting effects that can treat erectile dysfunction up to 36 hours after administration. 

Vardenafil

The active component of Levitra® – Vardenafil provides ED treatment for a little longer than Viagra or generic sildenafil.

Avanafil

Marketed under the trade name Stendra®, Avanafil is a more recent ED drug that acts rapidly and is less likely to result in specific side effects. 

Get BlueChew 1 month free of the active plan or $20 off any plan

Sildenafil vs Viagra – Tips for Achieving Optimal Results 

To achieve the best results with Sildenafil and Viagra, it is crucial to follow the prescribed dosage and take the medication approximately 30 minutes to one hour before sexual activity. Additionally, remember that the drug’s effectiveness may be reduced with a high-fat meal, as this can slow down the absorption of the medication into the bloodstream. 

Similarly, alcohol consumption should be limited, as excessive alcohol can impair sexual function and reduce the effectiveness of ED medications. It is also essential to communicate openly with your healthcare provider about any underlying medical conditions or medications, as these can impact the efficacy and safety of Sildenafil vs Viagra. 

Certain health conditions, such as heart disease, high blood pressure, or liver or kidney disease, may require adjusting the dosage or avoiding certain medications altogether.

Sildenafil vs Viagra – FAQ

What Is the Difference Between Sildenafil vs Viagra?

Sildenafil is the generic version of Viagra, containing the same active ingredient (Sildenafil Citrate). The primary difference is that Viagra is the brand name under which Pfizer markets the medication. In contrast, generic Sildenafil is produced by other manufacturers and is typically less expensive. Generic drugs are always less expensive than branded drugs.

Is Sildenafil as Effective as Viagra?

Yes, Sildenafil pills are equally effective as Viagra in treating erectile dysfunction, as both medications contain the same active ingredient. Clinical trials have shown that Sildenafil successfully treats ED in approximately 70% of cases. [7]

How Much Sildenafil or Viagra Should I Take?

The recommended starting dose for most patients is 50mg, taken approximately one hour before sexual activity. However, the dosage may need to be adjusted based on age, weight, overall health, and response to the medication.
Related: How much Sildenafil is too much

Can Sildenafil or Viagra Be Taken With Food or Alcohol?

Sildenafil and Viagra can be taken with or without food, but a high-fat meal may reduce the medication’s effectiveness. Alcohol consumption should be limited, as excessive alcohol can impair sexual function and reduce the effectiveness of ED medications.

Does Sildenafil Work As Good As Viagra?

Men who struggle to get an erection frequently use erectile dysfunction medication such as sildenafil. Since it is a generic form of Viagra, its active component (sildenafil citrate) and mode of action are the same.

Conclusion: Choosing The Right Option for Your Needs

In conclusion, both Sildenafil and Viagra are effective medications for treating erectile dysfunction, with the primary difference being the cost. Generic Sildenafil is typically much more affordable than branded Viagra, making it a more accessible option for many patients. 

However, it is essential to ensure that the medication is obtained from a reputable source to avoid counterfeit drugs that may be harmful. It is also worth considering alternative treatment options, such as Tadalafil and Levitra, which may be better suited for some individuals depending on their specific needs and preferences. 

The proper ED medication will ultimately depend on various factors, including personal medical history, underlying health conditions, and lifestyle factors. Consult a healthcare professional to determine your best option and ensure safe and effective treatment.

Try BlueChew active plan for free the first month

Related articles:

 

Share this article

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published

20 + three =

Subscribe to our Newsletter

Get our weekly newsletter about the most recent publications and reviews in the world of medical research

Subscribe to our Newsletter

Get our weekly newsletter about the most recent publications and reviews in the world of medical research