Other Medical Uses

Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension (PAH)

As well as in ED (erectile dysfunction), sildenafil citrate is also effective in the rare disease pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH). It works by relaxing the arterial wall, leading to decreased pulmonary arterial resistance and pressure. This in turn reduces the workload of the right ventricle of the heart and improves symptoms of right-sided heart failure. Because PDE-5 is primarily distributed within the arterial wall smooth muscle of the lungs and penis, sildenafil citrate acts selectively in both these areas without inducing vasodilation in other areas of the body. Sildenafil citrate was approved by FDA for this indication in June 2005. The preparation has name Revatio, to avoid confusion with Viagra, and the 20 milligram tablets are white and round. Sildenafil citrate joins the group of prostacyclin and bosentan (trade name: Tracleer) based therapies for this condition.

Raynaud’s Phenomenon Symptoms Relieve

In 2005, german researchers - Dr. Roland Fries and colleagues from Gotthard-Schettler-Klinik in Bad Schonborn, Germany, reported that in a small study of patients with severe Raynaud’s phenomenon who previously failed to respond to conventional treatment with vasodilators, sildenafil citrate significantly improved microcirculation and cut the frequency of Raynaud’s phenomenon attacks, reduced their duration by approximately one half, and more than quadrupled the mean capillary blood velocity. This was a double-blind, placebo-controlled crossover trial and the patients had both the primary and secondary forms and had all discontinued the more conventional treatments for this.

The report was published in the November issue of Circulation, a Journal of the American Heart Association - http://circ.ahajournals.org.

Other Non-medical Uses

Prevention of plant wilting

Israeli researcher Professor Yaacov Leshem reported that a low-concentration solution of sildenafil citrate in water significantly prolongs the time before cut flowers wilt. One experiment showed that Viagra could double the time before cut flowers wilted from one week to two weeks. The mechanism of action is similar to that in humans: nitric oxide (NO) leads to the production of cGMP whose degradation by PDE-5 is inhibited by sildenafil citrate.

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