Tadalafil (By mouth)


Tadalafil (ta-DAL-a-fil)

Treats erectile dysfunction (trouble having an erection). Also treats signs and symptoms of benign prostatic hyperplasia (enlarged prostate). Also treats pulmonary arterial hypertension (high blood pressure in the lungs) in both men and women.

Brand Name(s)

Adcirca, Cialis

When This Medicine Should Not Be Used

How to Use This Medicine


  • Take your medicine as directed. Your dose may need to be changed several times to find what works best for you.
  • The usual schedule for erectile dysfunction is to take this medicine about 30 minutes before having sex. You may also take this medicine once a day, at the same time of day, even if you do not plan to have sex at a certain time.
  • When using the medicine for erectile dysfunction, do not use it more than once a day. Always allow at least 24 hours between doses.
  • When using the medicine for benign prostatic hyperplasia, take 1 tablet at the same time each day.
  • You may take this medicine with or without food.
  • Swallow the Cialis® tablet whole. Do not split, break, or crush it.
  • Use only the brand of medicine your doctor prescribed. Other brands may not work the same way.
  • Read and follow the patient instructions that come with this medicine. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions.

If a dose is missed:

  • Take a dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, wait until then and take a regular dose. Do not take extra medicine to make up for a missed dose.

How to Store and Dispose of This Medicine

  • Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light.
  • Ask your pharmacist, doctor, or health caregiver about the best way to dispose of any outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.
  • Keep all medicine out of the reach of children. Never share your medicine with anyone.

Drugs and Foods to Avoid

Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.

  • Make sure your doctor knows if you also use medicine to treat prostate problems or high blood pressure, such as alfuzosin, amlodipine, bendroflumethiazide, candesartan, doxazosin, enalapril, losartan, metoprolol, tamsulosin, terazosin, Atacand®, Cardura®, Diovan®, Flomax®, Lopressor®, Minipress®, Norvasc®, or Uroxatral®. Your doctor should also know if you use antacids containing aluminum or magnesium hydroxide (such as Maalox® or Mylanta®), medicine for heart rhythm problems (such as amiodarone, procainamide, quinidine, sotalol, Betapace®, Cardioquin®, Cordarone®, Procanbid®, or Quinaglute®), or an antibiotic (such as erythromycin, EES®, or Erytab®).
  • Tell your doctor if you also use bosentan (Tracleer®), carbamazepine (Tegretol®), phenobarbital (Luminal®), phenytoin (Dilantin®), rifampin (Rifadin®, Rimactane®), medicine to treat HIV or AIDS (such as indinavir, ritonavir, Crixivan®, Kaletra®, or Norvir®), or medicine to treat fungus infections (such as itraconazole, ketoconazole, Nizoral®, or Sporanox®).
  • Do not drink alcohol while you are using this medicine.
  • Do not eat grapefruit or drink grapefruit juice while you are using this medicine.

Warnings While Using This Medicine

  • Make sure your doctor knows if you have kidney or liver disease, diabetes, high cholesterol, a stomach ulcer, bleeding problems, problems with the retina in your eyes (retinitis pigmentosa), or a penis with an abnormal shape.
  • Tell your doctor if you have heart or blood vessel disease or problems related to your blood cells. This includes heart valve problems, uneven heartbeats, high or low blood pressure, chest pain, heart failure, sickle cell anemia, or cancer of the blood (leukemia or multiple myeloma). Tell your doctor if you or anyone in your family has a heart condition called "long QT syndrome."
  • Tell your doctor if you have had chest pain during sex. Make sure your doctor knows if you have had a stroke or heart attack within the past 3 to 6 months, if you smoke, or if you are older than 50 years of age.
  • Your doctor needs to know if you use any other medicine that might cause low blood pressure, because tadalafil might also lower your blood pressure. If your blood pressure gets too low, you might faint or have other health problems.
  • This medicine should not be used by children.
  • Tadalafil is for men who have trouble getting and keeping an erection. It will not make a normal erection last longer or happen more often. This medicine is not for men who have normal sexual function.
  • This medicine will not cure erectile dysfunction or increase your sexual desire.
  • This medicine will not cause an erection unless you are sexually stimulated. Tell your doctor if you do not have an erection or if you are unhappy with your erection after you take this medicine.
  • This medicine will not protect you from sexually transmitted diseases (including HIV or AIDS) or prevent pregnancy.
  • This medicine may cause the penis to become erect when you do not want an erection or to stay erect for longer than you want. Call your doctor right away or go to a hospital emergency room if you have an erection that lasts longer than 4 hours.
  • Stop using this medicine and check with your doctor right away if you have a sudden loss of vision in one or both eyes, or if you have a sudden decrease in hearing or loss of hearing with dizziness and ringing in the ears.
  • If you take tadalafil for pulmonary arterial hypertension, do not take Cialis® or other similar medicines, such as sildenafil (Revatio® or Viagra®) or vardenafil (Levitra®). Cialis® also contains tadalafil. Your chance for side effects will be higher if you take too much tadalafil or take it together with these medicines.

Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine

Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:

  • Allergic reaction: Itching or hives, swelling in your face or hands, swelling or tingling in your mouth or throat, chest tightness, trouble breathing
  • Blistering, peeling, or red skin rash
  • Chest pain, especially if it spreads to your jaw or arm
  • Erection that is painful or lasts longer than 4 hours
  • Fast, pounding, or uneven heartbeat
  • Lightheadedness or fainting
  • Shortness of breath, numbness or weakness, or problems with speech or walking
  • Sudden loss of vision in one or both eyes
  • Sudden decrease in hearing or hearing loss, ringing in the ears, or dizziness

If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:

  • Back, joint, or muscle pain
  • Headache
  • Stuffy or runny nose
  • Upset stomach, nausea, or diarrhea
  • Warmth or redness in your face, neck, arms, or upper chest

If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088

Version Info

  • Last reviewed on 8/4/2014

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