Vardenafil is a phosphodiesterase type 5 (PDE5) inhibitor that is used to treat erectile dysfunction. It is sold under the brand name Levitra. In India, it is sold as Staxyn and in Italy, under the name Vivanza.
Levitra works by blocking the enzyme PDE5. It boosts the chemical nitric oxide in the body which in turn causes the penal muscles to relax. These muscles let the blood flow freely so that when you're sexually aroused, you get an erection immediately and maintain it during sexual intercourse. Levitra's effect remains for about four to six hours.
Follow your doctor's prescription and take it in exactly the same dosage as recommended. It can be taken with or without food. Ideally, it should be taken an hour before sexual intercourse as it can facilitate an erection the moment sexual stimulation occurs. However, an erection will not happen by merely taking the pill. Let the tablet dissolve in your mouth, don't chew it. Take it only once a day, keeping a gap of 24 hours between two doses.
The side-effects commonly experienced are: Stuffy or runny nose, indigestion, flushed face, dizziness and headache. These symptoms usually remain only for a few hours. The more serious side-effects include: dramatic fall in blood pressure, heart attack, stroke, vision loss and prolonged erection and hives.
If you are taking medicines called nitrates, desist from taking Levitra. Do not use Levitra if you are already on riociguat, medication for treating pulmonary arterial hypertension and chronic-thromboembolic pulmonary hypertension. Also, if your doctor tells you to keep off sex for health reasons, don't take Levitra or sexual activity can put a strain on your heart. If you have high blood pressure, Levitra is not for you.