Spedra tablets contain the active ingredient avanafil, which is a type of medicine called a phosphodiesterase type 5 inhibitor. It is used in the treatment of erectile dysfunction (impotence) to help men achieve and maintain an erection.
An erection is produced via a complex chain of events, involving signals from the nervous system and the release of chemical messengers within the tissues of the penis. One of these chemical messengers is called cyclic GMP.
Cyclic GMP causes the blood vessels in the penis to widen by relaxing a thin layer of muscle found in the blood vessel walls. This allows more blood to enter the penis, which ultimately results in the penis becoming rigid and erect. Cyclic GMP is normally broken down by another chemical in the body called phosphodiesterase type 5.
Avanafil works by preventing the action of phosphodiesterase type 5, thus stopping the breakdown of cyclic GMP. This means that the blood vessels are kept dilated for longer, which improves blood flow to the penis and helps maintain an erection.
As avanafil only enhances the actions of the chemical messengers responsible for producing an erection, it will only work once these messengers are released in the penis. This means that sexual stimulation is required for it to produce and maintain an erection.
Medicines and their possible side effects can affect individual people in different ways. Just because a side effect is stated here does not mean that all people using this medicine will experience that or any side effect. The following are some of the side effects that are known to be associated with Spedra:
Common (affect between 1 in 10 and 1 in 100 people):
- Nasal congestion.
Uncommon (affect between 1 in 100 and 1 in 1000 people):
- Indigestion (dyspepsia).
- Awareness of your heart beat (palpitations).
- Increased heart rate (tachycardia).
- Abnormal heart rhythm.
- Chest pain.
- Muscle pain.
- Back pain.
- Sleepiness or fatigue.
- Sinus congestion and headache.
- Blurred vision.
- Hot flushes.
- Difficulty breathing after exertion.
- Feeling sick or vomiting.
- Raised liver enzymes.
The side effects listed above may not include all of the side effects reported by the medicine's manufacturer.
For more information about any other possible risks associated with Spedra, please read the information provided with the medicine or consult your doctor or pharmacist.
Spedra should be used with caution in:
- Men over 70 years old.
- Men with mild to moderately decreased liver function.
- Men with diseases involving the heart and blood vessels (cardiovascular disease).
- Men with any obstruction of blood flow out of the heart, e.g. due to narrowing of the aorta (aortic stenosis).
- Men with bleeding disorders, e.g. haemophilia.
- Men with an active peptic ulcer.
- Men with conditions such as sickle cell disease, bone cancer or leukaemia in which there is an increased risk of prolonged erections (priapism).
- Men with a physical abnormality of the penis, such as severe curvature, scarring or Peyronie's disease.
Spedra should NOT be used in:
- Children or adolescents under 18 years of age.
- Men with severely decreased liver function.
- Men with severely decreased kidney function.
- Conditions in which sexual activity is not advisable, for example severe heart disorders.
- Men with angina not well controlled by medical treatment (unstable angina).
- Men with angina that occurs during sex.
- Men with heart failure.
- Men who have had a heart attack in the last six months.
- Men who have had a stroke in the last six months.
- Men who have experienced a life-threatening abnormal heartbeat (arrhythmia) in the last six months.
- Men with abnormal heart beats (arrhythmias) not controlled by treatment.
- Men with uncontrolled high blood pressure (hypertension).
- Men with low blood pressure (hypotension).
- Men taking any form of nitrate medications, e.g. glyceryl trinitrate or amyl nitrite "poppers" (see end of factsheet for more examples).
- Men with hereditary degeneration of the back of the eyeball (retina), such as retinitis pigmentosa.
- Men who have ever experienced an eye condition called non-arteritic anterior ischemic optic neuropathy (NAION). This condition causes a sudden, partial decrease or loss of vision in one or both eyes due to damage to the optic nerve. It can be temporary or permanent. Tell your doctor if you have ever experienced this.
This medicine should not be used if you are allergic to any of its ingredients. Please inform your doctor or pharmacist if you have previously experienced such an allergy.
If you feel you have experienced an allergic reaction, stop using Spedra and inform your doctor or pharmacist immediately.
The patient information leaflet (PIL) is a leaflet containing specific information about medical conditions, doses and side effects. You can download a copy of the PIL here:
Patient Info Leaflet