Why would an ICU patient be on Viagra BID (off label use?)

  1. A client that my wife cared for in an ICU environment had Viagra prescribed BID. This was a post-op CABG scenario. Is there an off label use for the drug not in Davis where this would be appropriate?
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  2. 24 Comments

  3. by   nursej22
    Viagra may be used for pulmonary hypertension, especially if coused by pulmonary fibrosis.
  4. by   nurse4theplanet
    that makes sense because it was originally designed as a BP med and the most common side effect was an erection.
  5. by   suzanne4
    It is actually used on babies also in the ICU and other settings for pulmonary hypertension, what it was originally designed for. Comes is a liquid form.
  6. by   ArmyWife,RN
    I had a patient just the other night that was admitted for persistant hypotension that had scheduled Viagra. I had to go looking for information on it - the short of it is it works as a nitrate. (I didn't give it - pt was on a dopamine drip at the time)

    A.W.
  7. by   veronica butterfly
    stupid question and not meant to be funny.....

    do these patients get erections? and if so, isn't it uncomfortable for them if not "relieved"? or does viagra help someone with impotence only by allowing the body to function if the "mind is willing?"

    sheesh, thanks.
  8. by   TennNurse
    Quote from veronica butterfly
    stupid question and not meant to be funny.....

    do these patients get erections? and if so, isn't it uncomfortable for them if not "relieved"? or does viagra help someone with impotence only by allowing the body to function if the "mind is willing?"

    sheesh, thanks.

    Good questions, all. I hope someone here can answer them; I'd like to know as well.
    Anyone???
  9. by   Agnus
    Quote from veronica butterfly
    stupid question and not meant to be funny.....

    do these patients get erections? and if so, isn't it uncomfortable for them if not "relieved"? or does viagra help someone with impotence only by allowing the body to function if the "mind is willing?"

    sheesh, thanks.
    In the beginning when it was first marketed a lot of people (lay) thought that. They would take the pill and waited expecting it to just pop up on its own. There must be sexual excitement. Viagra did not eliminate the need for foreplay. If no sexual excitement no erection.

    Viagra allows an erection to happen in those who have physical difficulty in achieving and erection.
  10. by   veronica butterfly
    Quote from Agnus
    In the beginning when it was first marketed a lot of people (lay) thought that. They would take the pill and waited expecting it to just pop up on its own. There must be sexual excitement. Viagra did not eliminate the need for foreplay. If no sexual excitement no erection.

    Viagra allows an erection to happen in those who have physical difficulty in achieving and erection.
    Thanks, makes sense!!
  11. by   Uptoherern
    ...............so they don't fall off the bed...........
  12. by   Roland
    Thanks, your information also raises another question. Why is it that Davis (and I'm going to go out out a limb and assume that Lippencott, Mosby et al are the same) don't mention the off label uses for Viagra? Is there a text (or website) that extensively covers the off label uses of various drugs? Also, I just did a Google search and found this article that discussed Viagra after a CABG to reduce the chance of graft blockage www.chestjournal.org/cgi/content/full/128/4/3065
    Last edit by Roland on Nov 28, '05
  13. by   elkpark
    The whole point of "off-label" use is that the drug has not been FDA approved as "safe & effective" for that other use. It's a v. grey area legally. The FDA forbids the pharmaceutical companies to promote off-label uses of their drugs; I imagine that the Rx drug reference books, which only cover FDA approved Rx drugs, may well feel that it would be inappropriate to discuss non-FDA-approved usages of Rx drugs.

    That's just my best guess, though -- someone else may have a better answer.
  14. by   babynurselsa
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sildenafil

    Check out the link. If you are looking it up as viagra you will find that it is marketed as an ED drug. If you look it up under the generic you will find tge original uses.
    Hope this helps.

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