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People with pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) may be able to improve their ability to exercise by taking Adcirca. This prescription medication works by relaxing the blood vessels in the lungs, which helps to improve blood flow. The drug is available in tablet form, and is taken only once a day. Potential side effects include headaches, nausea, and heartburn.

What Is Adcirca?

Adcirca™ (tadalafil) is a prescription medication used in people who have pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) to improve their ability to exercise.
 
(Click Adcirca Uses for more information, including possible off-label uses.)
 

Who Makes This Medication?

This medication is made by Eli Lilly and Company.
 

How Does Adcirca Work?

Adcirca belongs to a class of drugs called phosphodiesterase type-5 (PDE5) inhibitors. PDE5 is an enzyme responsible for breaking down a chemical found in the blood vessels of the lungs that causes them to relax.
 
By blocking PDE5, Adcirca allows more of this chemical to be available. As a result, the blood vessels in the lungs stay relaxed, allowing blood to flow more easily through them.
 

Clinical Effects of Adcirca

Clinical studies have shown that Adcirca can improve the ability to exercise in people with pulmonary arterial hypertension. In one study, people taking Adcirca for 16 weeks were able to walk 33 meters farther, on average, than people taking a placebo (a "sugar pill" that does not contain any active ingredients). People taking Adcirca also had fewer complications from their pulmonary arterial hypertension.
 

When and How to Take It

Some general considerations for when and how to take Adcirca include the following:
 
  • This medication comes in tablet form. It is taken by mouth once a day.
  • Adcirca should not be used more than once a day.
  • Try to take this medication at the same time each day to keep an even level of the medication in your blood.
  • Adcirca can be taken with or without food. Try taking it with food if it seems to bother your stomach.
  • For the medication to work properly, it must be taken as prescribed.
     
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
Last updated/reviewed:
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