Erectile Dysfunction Home > Stendra

Stendra is a drug prescribed to help treat erectile dysfunction (ED). Because it is fast-acting, the medication is taken about 30 minutes before sexual activity. It works by allowing blood flow to the penis to help a man get an erection and maintain it long enough for sexual intercourse. Side effects may include headaches, back pain, and a runny or stuffy nose.

What Is Stendra?

Stendra™ (avanafil) is a prescription medication approved to treat erectile dysfunction (ED). Men with erectile dysfunction have a repeated inability to get or maintain an erection. Stendra belongs to a class of medicines known as phosphodiesterase type-5 (PDE5) inhibitors. It is said to have a faster onset of action than other PDE5 inhibitor medications, which means it only needs to be taken 30 minutes before sexual activity.
 
(Click Stendra Uses for more information on this topic, including possible off-label uses.)
 

Who Makes This Medication?

Stendra is made by Vivus, Inc.
 

How Does Stendra Work?

When a man is sexually aroused, the body releases certain chemicals that relax the muscles in the penis. Normally, these muscles are constricted so that blood cannot flow into the penis. When the muscles relax, large amounts of blood are able to enter the penis. It is this blood flow into the penis that causes it to become erect.
 
An enzyme called phosphodiesterase type-5 (PDE5) is involved in breaking down the chemicals that caused the penis muscles to relax in the first place. When these chemicals are broken down, the muscles constrict, blood leaves the penis, and the erection goes away.
 
Like other PDE5 inhibitors, Stendra works by blocking PDE5. As a result, the chemicals that cause the penis muscles to relax remain active and blood can flow into the penis, resulting in an erection.
 
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
Last updated/reviewed:
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