How Fast Do Ed Medications Work?


ED medications help alleviate erection problems. They do not cure the condition though. They relieve erection difficulties by enhancing the blood flow to the penile. They work only in the presence of sexual arousal.

Four different ED medications are approved by the FDA. The time taken by each of these medications differs from another. This is so because they differ in their ingredient list and composition.

Different types of ED medications

The medicines that received approval from the FDA include Viagra (Sildenafil), Cialis (Tadalafil), Levitra (Vardenafil), and Stendra or Staxyn (Avanafil). These are all branded versions and are available only on prescription.    

They cannot be bought over-the-counter (OTC). Each of these medicines takes a different time to become active in the bloodstream. They all contain different ingredients in varying compositions.  

Time taken by ED medicines to work

The FDA has approved four medications for managing the symptoms of ED. These are branded medicines that can be bought only on a healthcare professional’s prescription. They are as follows:


These are branded pills that contain Sildenafil as their key ingredient. Their function is to boost blood circulation to the penile.  

Sildenafil is the active ingredient that is categorized under phosphodiesterase type 5 (PDE5) inhibitors. This ingredient carries out the crucial action in improving the erection response.

Apart from Sildenafil, the medicine has several other inactive ingredients. The medicine begins its action within 30 minutes to an hour of consumption. One must take the pill an hour before a planned sex.


Cialis pills have Tadalafil as their active component. The component is a PDE5 inhibitor that kicks into action in the presence of sexual arousal. These are available in small to high doses.

Small doses are suitable for daily use. Such doses help retain the effects of the medicine in the blood plasma. This offers spontaneity to have sex whenever the couple wishes.

The higher dose of this medicine cannot be used as a regular medicine. Doing so can trigger severe side effects. A high dose of Cialis is recommended for use once per week.

Tadarise 10 is a generic form of Tadalista, which is the key ingredient of Cialis medicines. They offer the same benefits as Cialis. They are easily affordable.  

The pill takes about 30 minutes to start its action. So, it has to be taken an hour before an anticipated sexual activity.  


These medicines have Vardenafil as their key ingredient. These medicines relax the blood vessels of the penile. Through relaxation, they boost the flow of blood inside the arteries of the penile and improve erectile function.  

It may take around 15 to 30 minutes for the effects of the medicine to begin its action. Note that, the medicine does not trigger erections spontaneously. It works only in the presence of sexual arousal.

Stendra or Staxyn

These branded medicines have Avanafil as their active ingredient. These medicines typically take around 15 to 30 minutes to begin their action. This medicine takes the shortest time to become effective in the bloodstream.

How do ED medicines work?  

All ED medicines work on improving vascular function. If you are struggling with erection function, this is the reason for vascular disorder. This happens due to the hyperaction of PDE5 enzymes.

PDE5 enzymes are found in the inner walls of the penile blood vessels. These PDE5 enzymes go out of control, and the levels of a vasodilator chemical, known as nitric oxide (NO), decrease, which leads to difficulties in getting erections.

ED medicines are PDE5 inhibitors that negate the hyperactivity of PDE5 enzymes. It enhances the levels of nitric oxide chemical in the walls of the blood vessels.  

Nitric oxide is a chemical that expands the blood vessels that become narrow due to PDE action. The release of NO improves the erection function, thereby restoring the symptoms of erectile dysfunction.  

Risks of ED medicines

Men living with chronic health conditions are more likely to develop dangerous side effects from these pills. The medicine can trigger a significant reduction in blood pressure, which can prove to be dangerous for those having heart disease, cardiovascular disorders, blood pressure problems, kidney problems, liver disorders, etc.         

It is essential to take safety measures and ask your healthcare provider whether medicines are appropriate for you. After taking the pill make sure you avoid activities like sports, driving, machine operating, etc. It potentiates the risk of accidents.    

ED medicines may trigger several side effects like dizziness and blurry vision and performing such activities makes you prone to accidents.        

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