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Last updated: Jan 18, 2022
4 min read

Maximum strength Viagra: what’s the highest dose of Viagra?

Viagra (sildenafil) comes in three dosages: 25 mg, 50 mg, and 100 mg. The most common starting dose of Viagra is 50 mg, and the highest dose available is 100 mg. Your healthcare provider will prescribe the dose of Viagra that’s best for you, depending on your medical history and any other drugs or supplements you’re currently taking. Never take more than one dose of Viagra in any 24-hour period.

Disclaimer

If you have any medical questions or concerns, please talk to your healthcare provider. The articles on Health Guide are underpinned by peer-reviewed research and information drawn from medical societies and governmental agencies. However, they are not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.

When it comes to medication, more isn’t always better (or more effective). That’s true with Viagra, too. It’s totally understandable to be curious about the highest dose of Viagra; we tend to want the most bang for our literal or figurative buck. But cranking your Viagra dose up to 11 isn’t the right choice for every guy, and it’s important to follow recommendations from your healthcare provider. Keep reading to learn more. 

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What Viagra dosages are available? 

Brand name Viagra comes (generic name sildenafil; see Important Safety Information) in three dosages: 25 mg, 50 mg, and 100 mg. 50 mg is the most commonly prescribed Viagra dosage (but that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s right for you) (FDA, 2014). 

Sildenafil can also be prescribed off-label (as the generic form of a drug called Revatio; see Important Safety Information) in 20 mg, 40 mg, 60 mg, 80 mg, and 100 mg doses.

100mg is the maximum dosage available for Viagra and sildenafil, and your healthcare provider is unlikely to prescribe more than that for you. 

How does Viagra work?

Viagra, the brand name of sildenafil, is an oral medication used to treat erectile dysfunction (ED). It works by opening up the blood vessels that lead to your penis, a process known as vasodilation. That makes blood flow more freely into the penis to make it easier to get and keep an erection.

Viagra isn’t automatically effective—it won’t give you an instant erection regardless of how you feel or where you are. You must be sexually aroused for it to work, and it can take up to two hours to kick in, though it usually starts to work within 40 minutes.

What determines your prescribed Viagra dosage?

Your healthcare provider will prescribe the dose of Viagra that’s best for you. Their decision often depends on:

  • Your age
  • Your overall and heart health
  • Other medical conditions you have—Health conditions such as liver or kidney disease may affect how your body absorbs Viagra, and you may need to take a lower dose. (And people who take medications such as nitrates for heart conditions shouldn’t take Viagra at all).
  • How you react to the first dose—Some people need a higher or lower dosage of Viagra to see the desired effect. Depending on your medical history, symptoms, and preferences, your doctor may start you at the lowest dose (25 mg of Viagra or 20 mg of sildenafil) to reduce the risk of side effects. Typically, they may recommend that you try using it a few times to see how it affects you. Also, some people like to try it first alone before using it with a partner. 
  • How often you use the medication—Do you plan to use Viagra every day? A few times a week? Once in a blue-pilled moon? The frequency of sex may affect what dosage your healthcare provider prescribes. They might also suggest a different medication, such as daily Cialis.

Regardless of the dosage of Viagra you’re prescribed—and this is important—never take more than one dose in any 24-hour period.

How much Viagra should you take the first time?

Your healthcare provider may start you on a lower dose to see how you tolerate it before increasing the dose. Remember: more doesn’t necessarily equal better. What matters is finding the right dose for you. 

Adjusting your Viagra dose

If Viagra isn’t working as it should—and you’ve followed all of your provider’s recommendations —they may prescribe a higher dose or switch you to a different medication.

Viagra’s effectiveness can depend on:

  • The dosage you’re originally prescribed—It may or may not have been the right amount for you.
  • Whether you take the drug on a full stomach—Doing so can slow Viagra’s absorption by the body, resulting in a delayed erection or one that is not as hard as you might like.
  • Whether you’ve given Viagra the appropriate amount of time to work—Take it one to two hours before you plan to have sex.
  • Psychological factors, such as performance anxiety

Potential side effects of Viagra

The most common side effects of Viagra include dizziness, headache, flushing, upset stomach or indigestion, increased sensitivity to light, blurred vision, “blue-tinted” vision, a stuffy or runny nose, insomnia, rash, and muscle pain (MedLinePlus, 2018).

Less common side effects of Viagra include priapism (a prolonged erection that won’t go away), heart attack-like symptoms (like pressure in your chest), eye problems such as sudden vision loss, ringing in your ears or hearing loss, seizures, or swelling in the extremities. If you experience any of these symptoms, seek immediate medical attention.

Viagra isn’t right for everyone. Work with your healthcare provider to ensure Viagra is a safe choice for you. If you’re taking any other medications—like nitrates or alpha-blockers—your provider may not recommend Viagra. 

You should never increase your dose, double your dose, or change how you take ED medication without the advice of your healthcare provider. If Viagra isn’t working the way you’d like, or you’re experiencing side effects, speak to your healthcare provider.

References

  1. MedlinePlus. (2018). Sildenafil. NIH: National Library of Medicine. Retrieved on Jan. 17, 2022 from https://medlineplus.gov/druginfo/meds/a699015.html 
  2. U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). (2014). Viagra (sildenafil citrate) tablets, for oral use. Retrieved on Jan. 17, 2022 from https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/drugsatfda_docs/label/2014/20895s039s042lbl.pdf