Tadora is commonly prescribed for erectile dysfunction, but the FDA has approved it for a few other treatments. It works by increasing the blood flow to the penis, causing an erection.

Tadora is also known as the “weekend pill,” since it can last for most of the weekend with just a single use. It lasts longer than other ED medications like Viagra, but what are the side effects? Who can use it?

Find out everything you need to know in this article.

What Is Tadora?

Tadora is the brand name for tadalafil and is used for erectile dysfunction and benign prostate hyperplasia. It is manufactured by Eli Lilly and Company.

This medicine works by relaxing the muscles around the genital area of men. It prevents phosphodiesterase-5 from working on the body. This further increases the amount of cyclic guanosine monophosphate (cGMP) in the body and relaxes smooth muscles inside blood vessels. This causes increased blood flow to the penis and penile erection [1].

It is prescribed by a doctor; you must provide your medical history and all the medications you are taking.

What’s the Dose of Tadora?

Tadora is sold in four different doses:

  • 2.5 mg
  • 5 mg
  • 10 mg
  • 20 mg
  • 40 mg
  • 60 mg

For erectile dysfunction (ED), Tadora is taken on an “as needed” basis as prescribed. The standard starting dose is 10 mg, but your doctor may prescribe a higher or lower dose depending on how you respond to the drug. The maximum dose for ED is 1 pill per day.

For benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), the dosing is a little different. This treatment is used daily, around the same time every day. The initial dose of Tadora for treating BPH is usually 5 mg per day.

How Long Does Tadora Last?

Tadora lasts around 36 hours and starts to take effect within half an hour.

The drug owes its long duration to the slow half-life of the active ingredient. It takes roughly 17.5 hours for exactly half of the drug to be metabolized. Compare this to 4 hours with Viagra.

How Much Does Tadora Cost?

Tadora’s cost varies and depends on the dose, but it is around $1.10.

Depending on the need, generic tadalafil can be found as a cheaper option.

The History of Tadora

In August 1991, Tadalafil was discovered under a partnership between Glaxo and ICOS to develop a new drug.

In 1998, ICOS Corporation and Eli Lilly and Company formed Lilly ICOS, LLC, a joint venture company to further develop and commercialize tadalafil as a treatment for ED [4].

Two years later, Lilly ICOS, LLC, filed a new drug application with the FDA for compound IC351 (as tadalafil and the Cialis brand name).

In 2003, the FDA approved tadalafil for the treatment of erectile dysfunction (ED). In 2011, the FDA approved tadalafil for signs and symptoms of benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). The FDA also approved tadalafil for treating BPH and erectile dysfunction (ED), where the two conditions co-exist.

Tadalafil is not under patent. So, the generic form is available under various brand names.

Who Should Take Tadora?

Tadora is used for the treatment of erectile dysfunction (ED) and also if you’re at risk for erectile dysfunction (ED). It can also treat signs and symptoms of prostatic enlargement.

Sexual arousal is still required to get an erection — Tadora does not work as a sexual stimulant. Use other measures to increase arousal and improve erection, like regular exercise, a healthy diet, drinking plenty of fluids, stress management, avoiding alcohol and cigarettes, and engaging in foreplay.

Your doctor will first assess whether Tadora is likely to interact with your current medications or whether any underlying health conditions could lead to a higher risk of severe side effects.

The risk of using Tadora needs to be weighed with the potential benefits before a prescription is written.

Is Tadora Safe?

Although Tadora is generally considered a safe and effective medication, some side effects are involved. Rarely, severe side effects may occur.

The most common side effects reported were headaches and dyspepsia, followed by back pain, nasal congestion, myalgia, and flushing [5].

The following lists contain some but not all of Tadora’s side effects:

Some side effects that may be seen with Tadora are:

  • Back pain
  • Flushing (warmth and redness in your skin)
  • Headache
  • Heartburn
  • Muscle pain
  • Pain in your arms or legs
  • Stuffy nose

Most of these side effects subside on their own. However, if it persists or becomes bothersome doctor’s consultation is required.

Tadora Drug Interactions

Below is a list of medications that can interact with Tadora, but this list doesn’t contain all drugs that may interact with it.

Before taking Tadora, talk with your doctor and pharmacist. Tell them about all prescriptions, over-the-counter medications, and any vitamins, herbs, and supplements you use. Sharing this information can help you avoid potential interactions.

Some common drugs that may interact with Tadora include:


Nitrates are used for the treatment of chest pain in angina. Taking nitrates along with Todora can dramatically drop blood pressure, leading to heart attack or stroke [2].


Tadora and alpha-blockers are vasodilators that can cause blood pressure to drop below healthy limits when used together.


Both medications lead to a lowering of blood pressure, so using them together can be dangerous. Inform the doctor if you are taking any antihypertensive medication.


The effects of mixing alcohol and Tadora include low blood pressure, dizziness, headaches, and increased heart rate. It might also affect Tadora’s efficacy.


If you’re taking Tadora and use antacids to treat heartburn, the antacids may decrease the level of Tadora that your body absorbs. You may not get the full dose of Tadora, so it may not work as well to treat your ED or symptoms of BPH.

CYP3A4 Inhibitors

Tadora is primarily metabolized in the liver by the CYP3A4 enzymes. Taking other drugs that are metabolized by this enzyme can affect the rate of decay for Tadora. This can lead to a prolonged half-life of the drug and elevated concentrations in the bloodstream, increasing the risk of developing side effects.

Common CYP3A4 Inhibitors include:

  • Cimetidine
  • Isoniazid
  • Ketoconazole
  • Omeprazole
  • Sodium Valproate

CYP3A4 Inducers

Opposite to CYP3A4 inhibitors, some medications increase the activity of this enzyme — leading to faster metabolism of Tadora. This may reduce the effectiveness of the medicine.

Common CYP3A4 Inducers Include:

  • Carbamazepine
  • Griseofulvin
  • Phenobarbital
  • Phenytoin
  • Rifampin

Who Should Avoid Taking Tadora?

The manufacturer of the drug, Eli Lilly, provides a detailed breakdown of patients who should not be prescribed Tadora. Tadora should be avoided by patients with the following:

  • A history of NAION (Non-arteritic anterior ischemic optic neuropathy)
  • Chronic liver or kidney disease
  • Current stomach ulcers
  • Known allergies to Tadora or other forms of tadalafil
  • Peyronie’s disease
  • Pulmonary hypertension
  • Retinitis pigmentosa
  • Uncontrolled high or low blood pressure

How Does Tadora Work?

Erectile dysfunction is a condition in which a person cannot achieve an erection or maintain it. Erection occurs when smooth muscles in the penis relax, causing blood to flow into it. Nitric oxide increases the activity of guanylyl cyclase, increasing the level of cyclic guanosine monophosphate (cGMP). cGMP is a chemical in your body that relaxes the muscles in the penis and increases blood flow into the penis. With ED, this activity isn’t working properly, so you can’t have or maintain an erection.

Tadora works by inhibiting an enzyme called phosphodiesterase 5. The enzyme is responsible for metabolizing cGMP and decreasing cGMP levels. Inhibiting this enzyme increases the level of cGMP in the blood, which causes smooth muscle to relax and increases blood flow to the penis leading to an erection.

Arousal is still needed to send the signal to the penis to trigger the erection in the first place, so Tadora only works when sexual arousal is present.

Can Women Use Tadora Too?

Tadora is not approved for use in women because the only accepted conditions for prescribing the drug are benign prostatic hyperplasia and erectile dysfunction — both of which are male-specific health conditions.

In men, Tadora improves blood flow to their penis by blocking the action of an enzyme called PDE5. This enzyme is also found in the vagina and the clitoris of women. In theory, Tadora could increase blood flow to a woman’s genitals, but the amount of PDE5 found in women is less than that of men. Studies have not shown enough evidence to suggest the use of Tadora in women.

Also, sexual problems in women often have a lot to do with reduced sexual desire and arousal. Tadora is unlikely to address these issues [3].

Tadora Alternatives

Tadora is just one of several brand-name PDE5 inhibitors used for treating erectile dysfunction.

Some pharmaceutical alternatives for Tadora include:

  • Avanafil (Stendra)
  • Mirodenafil (Mvix)
  • Sildenafil (Viagra)
  • Udenafil (Zydena)
  • Vardenafil (Levitra, Staxyn, and Vivanza)

Tadalafil is no longer protected under patent law, which means there are generic versions of the drug available at a much lower cost than the official brand name version of the drug.

Natural Alternatives To Tadora

While there are natural PDE5 inhibitors and other forms of erectile dysfunction supplements, nothing in the natural world is as reliable as Tadora or other prescription medications.

Many of these natural substances lack clinical testing and proof, but have been used for centuries for various ailments, including sexual problems. It rarely hurts to try a natural method before prescriptions.

Here are a few promising candidates worth mentioning:

Horny Goat Weed (Epimedium spp.) — This plant contains a compound called icariin, which is a relatively strong PDE5 inhibitor similar to Tadora.

L-Arginine — This amino acid is one of the required precursors for nitric oxide production, which in turn promotes the activity of cGMP to promote erection.

Korean Red Ginseng (Panax quinquefolium) — KRG extracts have been shown to improve nitric oxide production and promote dilation of the arteries in the penis, causing an erection.

Where to Buy Tadora?

Tadora is a prescription-only medication. It means you can get it only under the prescription of a certified doctor. After being prescribed by the doctor, you can buy it from a pharmacy or online drug store.

You must tell about your medical condition and any medicines, herbs, or supplements that you are taking to the doctor. The doctor might also assess your general health and may have tests done, if needed.

Natural supplements are another way to treat ED, so feel free to try those first. 

References Used

  1. Coward, R. M., & Carson, C. C. (2008). Tadalafil in the treatment of erectile dysfunction. Therapeutics and Clinical Risk Management, 4(6), 1315.
  2. Kloner, R. A., Hutter, A. M., Emmick, J. T., Mitchell, M. I., Denne, J., & Jackson, G. (2003). Time course of the interaction between tadalafil and nitrates. Journal of the American College of Cardiology, 42(10), 1855-1860.
  3. Monte, G. L., Graziano, A., Piva, I., & Marci, R. (2014). Women taking the “blue pill”(sildenafil citrate): such a big deal?. Drug Design, Development and Therapy, 8, 2251.
  4. Daugan, A., Grondin, P., Ruault, C., Le Monnier de Gouville, A. C., Coste, H., Linget, J. M., … & Labaudinière, R. (2003). The discovery of tadalafil: A novel and highly selective PDE5 inhibitor. 2: 2, 3, 6, 7, 12, 12a-hexahydropyrazino [1 ‘, 2 ‘: 1, 6] pyrido [3, 4-b] indole-1, 4-dione analogues. Journal of medicinal chemistry, 46(21), 4533-4542.\
  5. Frajese, G. V., Pozzi, F., & Frajese, G. (2006). Tadalafil in the treatment of erectile dysfunction; an overview of the clinical evidence. Clinical interventions in aging, 1(4), 439.







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