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All You Need To Know About Viagra Connect

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If you’re a man who is experiencing erectile dysfunction, you may have already used an ED tablet such as Viagra or Cialis. Currently these treatments are obtained via a prescription from your GP or through a private service such as LloydsPharmacy Online Doctor. However, as of Spring 2018, men over the age of 18 who experience erectile dysfunction will be able to buy a product called Viagra Connect over the counter in pharmacies.

If you’re interested in obtaining Viagra Connect, read on for an in-depth guide.

Is Viagra Connect the same as Viagra?

Yes. Both products are manufactured by the same company, contain the same active ingredient (sildenafil citrate), and look the same i.e. blue and diamond-shaped.

The key difference between Viagra Connect and prescription Viagra is that Viagra Connect will only be available in one dosage: 50mg. Some men currently on prescription Viagra will be taking a different dosage (either 25mg or 100mg), however 50mg is the most popular dosage.

Viagra Connect and Viagra should be taken in the same way (swallowed with water one hour before sex). Around one hour after taking Viagra Connect or Viagra, you should find that you can get an erection when sexually aroused, with this effect (the ability to get an erection) lasting for around four hours.

Why is Viagra Connect being made available over the counter?

As explained here, the decision to roll out Viagra Connect came “following a reassuring assessment of the safety of the Viagra Connect, advice from the Commission on Human Medicines, and a public consultation earlier this year with positive outcome.”

It’s hoped that this move will encourage more men experiencing erectile dysfunction to seek medical help. Despite increasing awareness about the condition, many men still feel embarrassed about visiting a doctor to discuss the problem and seek treatment.

This is problematic because erectile dysfunction is very often a symptom of another underlying condition; when a man visits his doctor with ED, it can help lead to the diagnosis of the underlying condition. Feeling too embarrassed to visit a GP or not having the time to book an appointment means that many men may be missing out on this vital health check.

It is also believed that a worrying number of men with ED are sourcing Viagra and other ED tablets illegally over the internet; in the past five years, investigators from the Medicines & Healthcare products Regulatory Agency have seized more than £50 million of unlicensed and counterfeit medicines. When obtained illegally it is impossible to tell whether an ED treatment is genuine, and – even if it is – whether it is safe to take.

By making it easier to obtain Viagra in a pharmacy, men with ED will have safe access to the medicine they need, and the opportunity to discuss their health problems with a medical professional.

Is it safe to obtain Viagra Connect over the counter?

Absolutely. All pharmacists stocking the medicine will be obligated to have a short discussion with the patient before selling them Viagra Connect. During this discussion, the pharmacist will determine whether Viagra Connect is safe for the patient to take and will offer advice on managing erectile dysfunction and taking the medication.

If you are already using prescription Viagra in a dosage of 50mg you should be able to safely transition to Viagra Connect; if you are using Viagra in a different dosage you may want to discuss your options with your GP before buying the product.

Some men will not be able to take Viagra Connect safely, and for this reason the pharmacist may ask several questions related to existing health conditions such cardiovascular disorders, liver failure and kidney failure. If you are taking certain treatments such as alpha-blockers or nitrates you will not be able to use Viagra Connect, so it’s important to speak to the pharmacist about any medications you are currently being prescribed.

Obtaining Viagra from Online Doctor

For men who would prefer to obtain their ED medication without speaking to someone face to face, there’s the Online Doctor Erectile Dysfunction Clinic. We can prescribe seven different ED treatments in a range of dosages, as well as a Combo Pack which lets you try three different tablets.

 All you have to do to order your medication is fill out a short, confidential questionnaire, which is checked by one of our doctors to ensure safety. Once your order has been approved by a doctor, your ED treatment can be delivered or made available to collect at your nearest LloydsPharmacy store.