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Sildenafil (Viagra)
Bits & Pieces
by Erowid

The "Bits & Pieces" section is intended for random snippets of information which don't fit
easily elsewhere and/or which have been newly added, but not yet carefully categorized.


  • Sildenafil Nasal Spray
    Six over-the-counter sex "supplements" (Reload, Get It Up, Super Cheetah, Cave Diver, Nights to Remember and X Zen Platinum) were found by the FDA to contain the drug sildenafil (Viagra) or tadalafil (Cialis). The products did not identify the contents.1
  • Sildenafil Nasal Spray
    In 1999, University of Kentucky researchers developed a nasal spray version of sildenafil that they successfully tested in rats. This method of administration would purportedly reduce the amount of time needed for the drug to take effect, and improve bioavailability. The technical challenge was making a delivery system that took into account how sildenafil is poorly soluble in water. At the time, Pfizer Inc., manufacturers of Viagra, did not express interest in the nasal spray2. Change of heart: A March 2000 CBC News article reported on Pfizer research of nasal spray Viagra in dogs and people3.
    Viagra nasal spray is different from another "viagra-like" nasal spray drug being developed for use by women. The "viagra-like" nasal spray PT-141 stimulates the central nervous system into transmitting signals which may improve blood circulation in the sexual organs. Viagra works by temporarily suppressing an enzyme that breaks down nitric oxide, a molecule essential to increasing the blood flow to the penis.

  • Sildenafil and Grapefruit Juice
    German researchers found that the absorption of Viagra increased by 23% when taken with grapefruit juice instead of water. Grapefruit juice also delayed the absorption of Viagra1. This latter point is important because Viagra is supposed to be taken one hour before sex, and taking the drug with grapefruit juice may result in longer onset of effects (an additional 20 minutes, on average)Jetter 2002.

    References #
    1. Jetter A, Kinzig-Schippers M, Walchner-Bonjean M, et al. Effects of grapefruit juice on the pharmacokinetics of sildenafil. Clinical Pharmacology and Therapeutics 2002; 71:21-29.
  • Before Viagra
    Before the Viagra craze, a man with erectile dysfunction had some painful choices. He could give himself an injection directly into the penis, resulting in an erection, or he could insert a tiny suppository into the urethra, which released an erection-promoting drug directly into penile tissue.

  • Viagra Deaths
    It may be difficult to accurately calculate the prevalence of Viagra-related death. They are often linked with pre-existing heart disease, and in many cases could be the result of exertion during intercourse. However, because of the particularly delicate topic of sex, deaths that would otherwise be considered drug-related may be recorded by coroners as "natural causes." In younger men, the incidence of death near the time of Viagra ingestion is still something to consider. Viagra reduces blood pressure, and it is particulary important to consider what other drugs or medications may affect circulation.