Originally created by scientists from Pfizer for the possible treatment of high blood pressure and angina back in 1989, volunteers from early trials in the 90’s reported increased erections after taking the drug. It turns out that the chemical combination of this experiment helps to amplify sexual stimulation by opening blood vessels in the penis. Viagra was later approved for sale in the United States by the FDA in 1998 to treat men with impotence, more commonly referred to as erectile dysfunction (ED).
Viagra comes in different doses because of different tolerance levels and effectiveness. It can be prescribed in either 25mg, 50mg or 100mg doses. Most men take the recommended dose of 50mg once per day, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that this is the correct dose for all recipients. It is important to speak with your doctor about drug interactions, health risks and possible side effects when deciding what does may be appropriate for you. For this reason, it is recommended that men get a prescription from their doctor to purchase Viagra, as opposed to acquiring the medication from people or places that do not require a prescription.
In South Africa, prescription medications are regulated by the Medicines Control Council (MCC), the South African Health Products Regulatory Authority (SAHPRA), and the National Department of Health. They are governed strictly by The Medicines and Related Substances Act No.101 of 1965, as amended (Medicines Act), Pharmacy Act No. 53 of 1974, as amended, and the Health Professions Act No.56 of 1974, as amended (HPA). These regulations and governing agencies are in place to minimize drug dependence and abuse, as well as to set a schedule of prescription drugs, grant licenses to health professionals and medication distributers, and determine medications that can be sold in South Africa.
Legally prescribed and purchased Viagra in South Africa can cost up to between 69R and 126R for the 25mg pill including dispensing fees and VAT (taxes), going up to 254R for a 4-pack of the 100mg pills. The conversion from Rand to US Dollars puts these ED pills somewhere between $5.50 for a 2-pack of the 25mg pills and up to $20.50 for a 4-pack of the 100mg pills. To put this into prospective, a can of soda in South Africa costs about 12R. These drugs are expensive. Generics are available at reduced pricing. It’s easy to see why South African men are among the world’s largest consumers of black market erectile dysfunction drugs under names like names Rock Hard, Mojo Nights, Lightning Rod, Black Mamba and Bullet Proof.
But, there are alternatives! Many online retailers sell Viagra with a valid prescription at a heavily reduced price. According to the Minister of Health, prescription drugs may be obtained from any manufacturing website that is used by the original manufacturer and approved.
I am medical practitioner from Cape Town. My professional interest: new treatments of erectile dysfunction.