When does Viagra expire?

Viagra (sildenafil) typically has a 2-year shelf life when properly stored

Does Viagra (sildenafil) expire?

Like most other medications, Viagra (called sildenafil when in generic form) becomes less effective the longer it is stored. With time, the drug’s active chemical ingredients degrade and the pill loses its effectiveness.

Sildenafil costs have come down dramatically in recent years and the price for the generic version now is around $2-3 per pill. That’s not much for a single pill, but if you are sitting on a larger stash of expired sildenafil, the financial loss can add up to much more. Understandably, you may be a bit reluctant to toss out the old pills.

However, doing just that is in your own best interest, as using expired Viagra not only no longer is effective but also can have unwanted side effects. Generally, try managing your sildenafil supply, i.e., don’t buy large quantities at once if you think they will last you longer than for 12 months.

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The fact that Viagra expires is one of the reasons why you only should buy the drug from legitimate, licensed pharmacies. This not only prevents buying fake medications but also protects you from being sold expired and re-packaged pills.  

 

What will happen if I take expired Viagra?

Using Viagra that’s expired will no longer give you strong erections or, if it’s been expired for a long time, no erection at all. This is because the chemicals inside the pill have broken down. You may think that other than running the risk of your erection being weaker, there’s no harm in trying some old pills. Some people may even take several pills at once, counting on the cumulative effect. That’s not a good idea though, because the degraded chemicals can impact your body in unintended ways, causing among other things the following:

  •  vision difficulties
  • muscle aches and pain
  •  nausea
  • itchiness or a feeling of being stung with needles
  • diarrhea
  • seizures
  • blood circulation issues
  • heart attacks

In case you’ve taken expired sildenafil and now experience any of the above symptoms, refrain from using it any further and properly dispose of the expired drug. If the symptoms persist for longer than a day, it’s recommended to seek medical help.

 

What’s the shelf life of Viagra and where do I find the expiry date?

Viagra and generic sildenafil, as well as other erectile dysfunction (ED) drugs like Cialis or Stendra, typically stay chemically potent for about two years if they are properly stored. That means keeping the pills in a closed bottle or other containers — the original packaging always is preferred —  stored in a dry cool (room temperature of around 77°F) place away from exposure to direct sunlight.  

The expiry date of your Viagra or generic sildenafil can be found printed on the bottom of the plastic bottle or side of the carton. It’s clearly printed and thus hard to miss. Typically it’s printed right to the batch number. When in doubt, you can always call the manufacturer and inquire about the production date and expected expiry of the batch in question.

In order to guarantee the full shelf life, it’s important that you store the pills in an airtight container or other packaging, since long-term exposure to air, especially air moisture, can lead to bacterial growth or mold on the pills. This initially won’t be visible to the naked eye but can cause adverse health effects.

In conclusion, using expired sildenafil never is a smart idea and risks harming your health at the trivial gain of saving a few bucks. Instead, regularly check your existing supplies and plan ahead, so that you don’t buy too much Viagra at once.

 

References

  1. “VIAGRA® How Supplied/Storage and Handling (Sildenafil Citrate) | Pfizer Medical Information - US.” Www.Pfizermedicalinformation.Com, www.pfizermedicalinformation.com/en-us/viagra/storage-handling. Accessed 30 Sept. 2020.

 

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