Levitra (vardenafil)

Search by Drug or Product Name

Brand Name

Levitra {GlaxoSmithKline/Bayer}

Generic Name

vardenafil, pronounced var DEN a fil


What is Levitra?

Levitra is prescribed to treat impotence or erectile dysfunction (ED) in men. Levitra can help to relax muscles and increase the blood flow into the penis for men during sexual activity. This increase in blood flow may help men to achieve and maintain an erection.

Levitra may be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.


Key Facts About Levitra

Levitra is a phosphodiesterase inhibitor, and it works by relaxing muscles and increasing blood flow into the penis.

You should not take Levitra more than one time in a 24 hour period.

If you are taking a nitrate drug for chest pain or heart problems you should not take Levitra. These medications include nitroglycerin (Nitrostat, Nitrolingual, Nitro-Dur, Nitro-Bid, and others), isosorbide dinitrate (Dilatrate-SR, Isordil, Sorbitrate), and isosorbide mononitrate (Imdur, ISMO, Monoket). Nitrates can also be found in some recreational drugs like amyl nitrate or nitrite (“poppers”). If you take Levitra and a nitrate drug you may experience a serious and sudden decrease in your blood pressure.

Levitra may decrease blood flow to the optic nerve of your eye, which may cause a sudden loss of vision. This rare occurrence has happened mostly in people who took Levitra and had heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, were smokers, were over age 50, or had certain pre-existing eye conditions. We still do not know if Levitra caused the actual vision loss. If you experience sudden loss of your vision stop using Levitra right away and seek emergency medical attention.

While taking Levitra and during sexual activity, if you become dizzy or nauseated, or if you experience numbness, tingling or pain in your chest, arms, neck, or jaw, stop and call your doctor immediately. These signs could indicate that you are having a serious reaction to Levitra.


Before You Take Levitra

If you are allergic to vardenafil you should not take Levitra.

You should not take Levitra if you are taking nitrate medications. This includes nitroglycerin (Nitrostat, Nitrolingual, Nitro-Dur, Nitro-Bid, and others), isosorbide dinitrate (Dilatrate-SR, Isordil, Sorbitrate), and isosorbide mononitrate (Imdur, ISMO, Monoket).

If you take Levitra alongside nitrate medications you put yourself at risk of having a serious and sudden drop in blood pressure.

Tell your doctor if you have had either heart disease, a heart attack, a stroke, congestive heart failure or heart rhythm problems before taking Levitra.

Tell your doctor if you have high or low blood pressure, “Long QT Syndrome”, or coronary artery disease before taking Levitra.

Let your doctor know if you have retinitis pigmentosa, which is an inherited condition of the eye, before taking Levitra.

If you have a physical deformity of the penis, like Peyronie’s disease, or if you have previously been told that you should not have sexual intercourse for health reasons, you may not be a candidate to take Levitra.

You should inform your doctor if you have kidney or liver disease, are on dialysis or if you have a stomach ulcer.

If you have a blood disorder like sickle cell anemia, multiple myeloma, or leukemia, or a bleeding disorder like hemophilia you should tell your doctor before taking Levitra.

Grapefruit and grapefruit juice should not be consumed when you are taking Levitra, as it can interact with Levitra and potentially lead to dangerous side effects. Discuss your use of grapefruit products with your doctor.

You should not drink alcohol while taking Levitra as it may increase certain side effects of this medication.


Levitra Drug Interactions

You should inform your doctor if you are taking any of the following:

  • alprostadil (Caverject, Muse, Edex)
  • amiodarone (Cordarone, Pacerone)
  • antibiotics clarithromycin (Biaxin), dalfopristin/quinupristin (Synercid), erythromycin (E.E.S., EryPed, Ery-Tab Erythrocin, Pediazole) or telithromycin (Ketek)
  • antifungal medications itraconazole (Sporanox), ketoconazole (Nizoral), miconazole (Oravig), or voriconazole (Vfend)
  • atazanavir (Reyataz)
  • carbamazepine (Carbatrol, Equetro, Tegretol)
  • conivaptan (Vaprisol)
  • darunavir (Prezista)
  • diltiazem (Cardizem, Dilacor, Tiazac)
  • erectile dysfunction (ED) medications like sildenafil (Viagra) or tadalafil (Cialis)
  • fosamprenavir (Lexiva)
  • imatinib (Gleevec)
  • indinavir (Crixivan)
  • isoniazid (for treating tuberculosis)
  • nefazodone (an antidepressant)
  • nelfinavir (Viracept)
  • nevirapine (Viramune)
  • nicardipine (Cardene)
  • nitrate medications like nitroglycerin (Nitrostat, Nitrolingual, Nitro-Dur, Nitro-Bid, Minitran, Deponit, Transderm-Nitro), isosorbide dinitrate (Dilatrate-SR, Isordil, Sorbitrate), and isosorbide mononitrate (Imdur, ISMO, Monoket), or recreational drugs like amyl nitrate or nitrite (“poppers”)
  • prazosin (Minipress)
  • procainamide (Procan, Pronestyl)
  • quinidine (Quin-G)
  • rifabutin (Mycobutin)
  • rifampin (Rifadin, Rimactane, Rifater, Rifamate)
  • ritonavir (Norvir, Kaletra)
  • saquinavir (Invirase)
  • sotalol (Betapace)
  • tamsulosin (Flomax)
  • terazosin (Hytrin)
  • verapamil (Calan, Covera, Isoptin, Verelan)
  • yohimbine (Yocon, Yodoxin)

Other drugs you take that are not listed may interact with Levitra. You should tell your doctor about all of the medications you use. This includes prescription drugs, vitamins, supplements and herbal products, and over the counter medications. You should not begin taking a new medication without telling your doctor first.


Directions for Taking Levitra

Levitra may be taken with or without food

Levitra should be taken as needed, about 60 minutes before sexual activity. Do not take Levitra more than once per day, or every 24 hours.

Levitra may help you to have an erection when sexual stimulation occurs. You cannot just get an erection by taking Levitra. Let your doctor know if you have any concerns about how you should take this medicine.

If you miss a dose of Levitra you should be sure that your last dose was at least 24 hours ago. Do not take 2 doses at once, or take doses any sooner than one day, or a full 24 hours apart.

Levitra should be stored at room temperature, and away from both moisture and heat.

You should contact your doctor immediately if your erection lasts 4 hours or longer, or is painful.


Levitra Side Effects

If you experience any of the following adverse effects you should stop taking Levitra and seek emergency medical help immediately:

While you are engaging in sexual activity, if you should become dizzy, nauseated, or have pain, tingling or numbness in your chest, arms, neck, or jaw, stop and call your doctor immediately. These side effects could indicate a serious adverse effect of Levitra.

  • chest pain or a heavy feeling in your chest
  • chest pain that spreads to your arm or shoulder, accompanied by nausea, sweating and a general ill feeling
  • fainting or feeling faint
  • irregular heartbeat
  • loss of vision
  • penis erection that lasts 4 hours or longer or is painful
  • ringing in your ears, or a sudden loss of hearing
  • seizures or convulsions
  • shortness of breath
  • swelling in your hands, ankles, or feet
  • vision changes

Less serious side effects of Levitra are:

  • back pain
  • dizziness
  • headache
  • stuffy nose or cold symptoms
  • upset stomach
  • warmth and redness on your face, neck or chest

It should be noted that this is not a complete list of possible side effects of Levitra. You should contact your physician for a complete list and medical advice regarding these effects.


Levitra Description and Dosing

Levitra tablets are available in dosages of 2.5mg, 5mg, 10mg and 20mg.

All Levitra tablets are orange, round, and film-coated with “BAYER” cross debossed on one side and the dosage number on the other side. (“2.5”, “5”, “10”, “20”)

Most patients who are prescribed Levitra start with the recommended dose of 10mg, taken orally, about 60 minutes before anticipated sexual activity. Your doctor may increase your dose to a maximum dose per day of 20mg, or decrease your dose to 5 mg once daily as needed. Your doctor will decide what dose is appropriate for you. You should not take Levitra more than one time in a day, or within 24 hours.

All people taking Levitra should consult their doctor for specific dosing pertaining to them. Do not attempt to alter or change your dose without your physician’s consent.

If you believe you have overdosed on Levitra you should seek medical help immediately.


Ingredients in Levitra

The main ingredient in Levitra is vardenafil. Other ingredients are microcrystalline cellulose, crospovidone, colloidal silicon dioxide, magnesium stearate, hypromellose, polyethylene glycol, titanium dioxide, yellow ferric oxide, and red ferric oxide.

Back to Top



The information contained in this drug guide is intended as an educational resource only. This guide is not exhaustive and does not contain all available information about this drug.This guide is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatment.

The information provided in this guide does not replace the need for the advice and services of medical professionals or the need for medical examination. Always talk to your physician or pharmacist before taking any prescription medication or over the counter drugs (including any supplements) or before making any changes to your treatment. Only your doctor, nurse or pharmacist can provide you with safe and effective advice regarding your drug treatment.

The use of the information in this guide is at your sole risk. This information is provided "AS IS" with no warranties to accuracy or timeliness.

**All trademarks and registered trademarks are the property of their respective owners.