Before starting any drug therapy, it is good to understand how fast will it act, how long will it stay in the blood, does it accumulate or not, and does it have any unwanted side effects and interactions.
Sildenafil is a drug with proven clinical results. It is one of the most successful medications in human history. Billions of doses used show that it is safe enough for non-prescription sales.
It acts by inhibiting the so-called PDE5 enzyme in the penile blood vessels, thus increasing cGMP, which finally causes relaxation of local blood vessels. On adequate sexual stimulation, it gives immediate and hard erection that lasts for several hours. Since for most men, it continues to work for hours; it helps to have multiple sexual acts.
However, individual sensitivities vary a lot. Some men may continue feeling benefit for much longer. This article looks in detail on what to expect and how long it stays in the system.
Factors Impacting the Duration of Action
How fast any drug stays in the system, and how quickly it acts depends on many factors like genetics, age, food intake, and so on.
Usually, younger adults would see a faster effect. Though the younger body will metabolize the drug faster, this does not mean impact for less time. Since younger adults are more sensitive to drugs, they may report a longer duration of action. Moreover, they are living with less severe ED. In many cases, younger adults may be using not to treat ED, but for increasing performance.
Older adults, on the other hand, maybe slow to metabolize the drug, but they may still under-report the effect as they are not so sensitive to medications. Moreover, they may be living with other chronic conditions.
Studies show that sildenafil starts acting as early as 20 minutes. It reaches a peak in an hour or an hour and a half. It works quite well for about four hours in most of the cases. After that, there is a fall in its action (1).
Food may slow down the absorption, but it may also prolong the action, and sildenafil may stay in the system for longer.
In Many, It Acts Longer Than Expected
Studies show that most of the sildenafil has left the system in 12 hours. After reaching a peak in an hour, its levels gradually start falling.
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However, many adults report the much longer duration of action with sildenafil. Most adults feel much better erection even after 12 hours. Most individuals who took sildenafil in the evening would have a better erection next morning. Therefore, researchers think that there is a need to reconsider its therapeutic window (2, 3).
Viagra may peak-up in few hours, but due to its impact on blood vessels, some people continue to feel the benefits much later. Additionally, its confidence-boosting effect and the psychological impact lasts much longer.
So, How Long Does Sildenafil Remain in the System?
Studies show that it may remain in the system for 24 hours. And after that, it becomes almost undetectable by modern science. This is the reason why researchers allow using it once a day (4, 5).
How much and how long sildenafil stays in the system depends on a dose too. 50 mg is suitable for adults, but 100 mg is better for most cases. Some people may try a higher dose of 200 mg, and its effect may last much longer, and it may stay in the system for a few hours longer, too.