Side Effects of Vardenafil (Levitra) Side Effects
Vardenafil, commonly known as the brand Levitra works by blocking an enzyme called phosphodiesterase type 5 inhibitor (PDE5). The medication helps the penis muscle relax and allowing blood to flow freely to maintain an erection.
Serious Side Effects
The Levitra label reported by the FDA lists the severe side effects of Levitra:
- Hypertension (high blood pressure)
- Priapism (painful erection)
- Palpitations (irregular patterns of heartbeats)
- Tachycardia (increased heart rate)
- Angina (chest pain)
- Myocardial infarction (heart attack)
- Hypotension (low blood pressure)
- Syncope (fainting)
- Erythema (red skin)
- Gastrointestinal and abdominal pain
- Gastroesophageal reflux (acid reflux)
Common Side Effects
The common side effects of Levitra are flushing, headache, dizziness, paresthesia (burning and tingling sensations throughout the body), sleepiness, rash, swelling, dyspepsia (indigestion) nausea, dry mouth, vomiting, back pain, myalgia (muscle pain), tinnitus (ringing in the ears), vertigo (sensation of a moving environment and dizziness), dyspnea (cough), sinus and nasal congestion, increased tears, and epistaxis (nose bleeding) (Levitra label outlined by the FDA).
About Pharmacogenetic Testing
Some patients never suffer from adverse effects when taking Levitra while others do. This inter patient variability is due to a number of different reasons, one of which being the genetic differences between patients. Studies have shown that a number of genes controlling the NO and cGMO pathways have been associated with drug response to PDE5 inhibitors.
Variable metabolic rates of Levitra may also be associated with development of side effects. The drug is metabolized by the cytochrome P450 superfamily of enzymes. Polymorphisms in these enzymes may increase the probability of developing adverse effects when taking the drug. Identifying these alleles can aid doctors and their decision making when prescribing Levitra.
Know Your Risk with the Rxight® Genetic Test
MD Labs’s Rxight® genetic testing technology sequences 18 genes for 60 alleles . This is used to establish how a patient is likely to react to hundreds of drugs, including Levitra to prevent side effects and allow your prescriber to determine a safe dose or find an alternative medication for your condition.
Contributors to this Article:
Michael Sapko, MD, PhD; and Deborah Kallick, PhD, Medicinal Chemistry
Read more about Rxight® Individualized Medicine