The Blue Pill vs Other Erectile Dysfunction Medicines

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Written By Julie Ingram
Blue pill vs other ED medications

The Blue Pill, also known as Viagra, is an approved medicine for treating Erectile Dysfunction (ED). 

ED makes it difficult for men or Assigned Males at Birth (AMAB) to get or maintain a firm erection during sexual intercourse.

The Blue Pill (Viagra) is the oldest and most studied medicine for treating ED. However, it is not the only medicine. There are many alternatives available on the market. 

All of the available ED medicine has its own advantages and disadvantages. This article aims to guide you in finding the best ED medicine.

This article will compare the Blue Pill vs. other Erectile Dysfunction medicines. It will compare their onset of action, duration of effects, side effects, safety, cost, and dosages.

Other medicines for treating ED

Other than the Blue Pill (Viagra) containing Sildenafil, there are three medicines approved by FDA for treating ED.

These alternatives to the Blue Pill are:

  • Cialis, with active ingredient Tadalafil
  • Levitra,  with active ingredient Vardenafil
  • Stendra,  with active ingredient Avanafil.

All of these approved ED medications have the same mechanism of action. They inhibit the action of Phosphodiesterase 5 (PDE5), which is responsible for breaking down cyclic Guanosine Monophosphate (cGMP). 

Inhibition of this enzyme increases the cGMP level, which relaxes the blood vessels and improves the blood flow to the penis. This improved blood flow helps men to get and maintain an erection.

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  • Comparison of ED medicines

    There are some differences between all the available ED pills. Some work faster than others, some have fewer side effects, and some remain effective for longer.

    For safe and effective treatment of ED, it is important to be aware of differences in available treatment options. 

    The choice of the ED pill depends upon your personal preferences and other factors. 

    Personal preferences include how fast or long you want the medication to work. Other factors include age, current medicines, presence of other diseases, etc.

    Here we will compare some of the deciding factors of the Blue Pill and other approved ED medications.

    ED pill with the fastest action

    If you prefer fast action, Stendra (Avanafil) is the best choice for you. Among all the ED pills, Stendra has the fastest onset of action.

    Clinical studies suggest that Stendra (Avanafil) starts working within 15 minutes of swallowing.

    The Blue Pill (Viagra) starts working within 30 to 60 minutes. Levitra also takes 30 to 60 min to work, whereas Cialis starts ‘working in 30-45 minutes.

    The onset of action can differ between individuals. Your overall health, metabolic rate, and food intake can affect its timing.

    ED pill with the longest effects

    Cialis (Tadalafil), is the best choice for people who prefer more flexibility in their sexual encounters.

    Cialis has the longest duration of effect among all ED medications. It can last upto 36. Its longest duration of effects has earned it the nickname “The Weekend Pill.”

    The Blue Pill (Viagra) and Levitra (Vardenafil) usually last around 4 to 5 hours. Stendra (Avanafil) lasts around 6 to 7 hours.

    These timings are noted in the clinical trials. The actual duration of effects can differ among individuals.

    ED pill with the least side effects

    viagra headacheSource: pixabay

    Among all the four approved ED medications, Stendra (Avanafil) has the least side effects. This is because it is a newer and second-generation medication approved in 2012.

    Every ED pill has some side effects and should only be taken with a doctor’s consultation. 

    Common side effects of taking ED medication are headache, flushing, indigestion, etc. 

    The most effective and safe ED pill

    As per clinical trials, all four ED medications have around the same efficacy rate of 80%. However, some diseases like Diabetes can affect the efficacy rate.

    The Blue Pill (Viagra) is the oldest and most studied ED medication. Due to the higher number of clinical trials, Viagra has a well-studied risk and interaction profile.

    These studies help doctors better assess the health of patients and adjust the dosage to minimize the risk of side effects. The Blue Pill (Viagra) is usually most doctors’ first choice. 

    Cheapest ED pill

    In terms of cost of treatment, the generic version of the Blue Pill (Sildenafil) is the cheapest ED treatment. It costs around $ 0.72 for a single 50mg pill.

    The generic version of Cialis (Tadalafil) costs around $0.93 for a single 40mg pill. The generic version of Levitra (Vardenafil) costs $1.24 per 40mg pill.

    There is no generic version of Stendra available yet. The branded Stendra costs around $68.90 per 50mg tablet.

    To reduce the cost of ED treatment, always buy the generic version of the medicine. Generic medicines have the effectiveness and strength of their branded counterparts at a low price.

    Quick overview of all the ED pills

    A simple table comparing the key features of The Blue Pill (Viagra), Cialis, Levitra, and Stendra:

    Drug NameThe Blue Pill or Viagra(Sildenafil)Stendra(Avanafil)Cialis(Tadalafil)Levitra(Vardenafil)
    Approval Year1998201220032003
    Is Generic version available?YesNoYesYes
    Onset of Action30-60 minutes15-30 minutes30-45 minutes25-60 minutes
    Duration of Effect4-5 hours6 hoursUp to 36 hours4-5 hours
    Efficacy Rate70-80%Approximately 80%Approximately 80%Approximately 80%
    Common Side EffectsHeadache, flushing, dyspepsia, nasal congestionHeadache, flushing, nasal congestionHeadache, dyspepsia, back pain, myalgia, nasal congestionHeadache, flushing, dyspepsia, nasal congestion
    ConsiderationA high-fat meal can delay the effectRapid onset may provide an advantage for some; less affected by food intakeCan be taken daily; not significantly affected by foodA high-fat meal may delay the effect but that does not affect the overall effectiveness 
    Treats Pulmonary Arterial HypertensionYesNoYesNo
    Available Doses25 mg, 50 mg, 100 mg50 mg, 100 mg, 200 mg2.5 mg, 5 mg, 10 mg, 20 mg5 mg, 10 mg, 20 mg
    Method of TakingOral, taken as needed, around 1 hour before sexual activity,Oral, taken as needed, 15-30 minutes before sexual activityOral, can be taken daily or as needed, at least 30 minutes before sexual activityOral, taken as needed, around 1 hour before sexual activity
    This article only aims to inform you about the difference between ED medicines. It should not be used as medical advice. Only a doctor should decide on the ED pill you take. Using the information in this article for self-medication can pose serious health risks.


    Understanding the difference in the Blue Pill vs. other Erectile Dysfunction medicines is crucial for safe and effective ED treatment.

    Four ED pills are approved for ED treatment: the Blue Pill (Viagra), Cialis, Levitra, and Stendra.

    All four ED pills are almost equally effective and have the same mechanism of action.

    Stendra is the fastest-working ED pill and starts working in 15 minutes. Cialis can last up to 36 hours.

    Avanafil has fewer side effects than all other approved ED medicines. 

    The choice among these pills depends on many factors, like age, health, and personal preferences.

    It is advisable to consult a doctor to determine the most suitable ED pill for you. 

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    Frequently Asked Question

    What are the other Erectile Dysfunction medicines besides the Blue Pill?

    There are several other FDA-approved medications for Erectile Dysfunction. These are Cialis (Tadalafil), Levitra (Vardenafil), and Stendra (Avanafil). These drugs work in a similar way to the Blue Pill (Viagra) but have different characteristics.

    How does the Blue Pill (Viagra) differ from other Erectile Dysfunction medications?

    The Blue Pill (Viagra) and other ED medications differ in how quickly they work, how long they last, and their potential side effects.

    What are the side effects of the Blue Pill (Viagra) and other ED medicines?

    Common side effects of the Blue Pill (Viagra) and other ED medicines include headaches, facial flushing, upset stomach, and dizziness. In rare cases, these drugs can cause vision changes or sudden vision loss. If you experience any of these symptoms, seek medical attention immediately.

    Do I need to take the Blue Pill or other ED medicines daily?

    Not necessarily. The frequency depends on the specific drug and your individual needs. Some men might need an ED drug before each sexual encounter, while others might take a daily low-dose medication. Always follow your healthcare provider’s instructions.

    Can the Blue Pill or other ED medicines help with premature ejaculation?

    ED medications primarily address the issue of getting and maintaining an erection. They do not directly treat premature ejaculation, which is a separate condition. However, some men find that maintaining an erection with these medications can help address premature ejaculation.

    Is the Blue Pill more effective than other ED medicines?

    The effectiveness of ED medication can depend greatly on the individual. While Viagra might work best for one person, Cialis, Levitra, or Stendra might be more effective for others. It’s best to discuss your options with a healthcare provider to find the medication that will work best for you.

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