Viagra (sildenafil), Cialis (tadalafil), and Levitra (vardenafil) are common medications used to treat erectile dysfunction (ED). Cialis is manufactured by Eli Lilly and Co., Viagra by Pfizer, and Levitra by Bayer and GlaxoSmithKline.
All three drugs are classified as phosphodiesterase type 5 (PDE5) inhibitors and are used to increase the flow of blood to the penis. There are subtle differences in how each drug works and how quickly it works. Viagra was the first of these drugs approved by the FDA in 1998, and since then other similar drugs have been approved to treat impotence in men. Levitra and Cialis were both approved in 2003 for ED and in 2011 Cialis was approved by the FDA to treat benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH).
Viagra has been prescribed to more than 23 million men worldwide since its approval and is one of Pfizer’s highest-selling drugs. However, there are a growing number of cases being reported where men have experienced serious side effects, the newest one being an increased risk of melanoma skin cancer.
Side Effects Associated with ED Drugs
In recent years, reports on all three drugs have linked the drugs to serious side effects in men who have taken them.
Viagra, Levitra, and Cialis have been linked to the following serious side effects:
- Non-arteritic anterior ischemic optic neuropathy (NAION), or the sudden loss of vision in one eye, partial or complete
- Sudden loss of hearing, tinnitus (ringing in the ears), or dizziness
- Priapism, a persistent, prolonged erection lasting four hours or longer that can cause permanent damage to the penis
- A sudden drop in blood pressure, which can lead to fainting, heart attack, or stroke.
New research has indicated that the use of ED drugs may increase the risk of melanoma, a deadly form of skin cancer.
A 2014 journal publication found that men who used Viagra faced a significant increased risk (nearly twice as much) of developing melanoma. Using data from the Health Professionals Follow-Up Study (HPFS), Viagra use resulted in an 84% increase in the development of melanoma and even after just a one-time use, doubled the likelihood of developing the disease. Viagra is thought to promote the spread of the melanoma beyond the skin to other parts of the body which may result in death. Melanoma is responsible for more than 10,000 deaths a year in the U.S. alone.
At McDivitt Law Firm, we feel that you deserve information that may be relevant to your rights as a consumer. We want to alert you to a potential claim regarding medications that you or someone you know may have previously taken. Currently there is no label on these drugs warning of the increased risk of cancer associated with their use.
We may be able to help you if:
- You used Cialis, Levitra, or Viagra and developed non-arteritic anterior ischemic optic neuropathy (NAION), a sudden loss of hearing, tinnitus (ringing in the ears), or dizziness, priapism, a sudden drop in blood pressure that lead to fainting, heart attack, or stroke, or skin cancer after use.
If you or someone you know has taken Cialis, Levitra, or Viagra and experienced any of the conditions listed above, please contact us today for a free and confidential case evaluation.