Practitioners' Section - Novel phosphodiesterase-5 inhibitors: Current indications and future directions|
Cardiovascular diseases like hypertension, hyperlipidemia, diabetes mellitus and obesity are the important predictors of erectile dysfunction (ED). Endothelial dysfunction is proposed to be the underlying cause of ED, just like coronary artery disease. Sildenafil was originally developed to treat angina pectoris but later on was recognized as novel treatment option for impotence. To date, sildenafil has been the most extensively studied PDE (phosphodiesterase)-5 inhibitor. Currently two more PDE-5 inhibitors, tadalafil and vardenafil, are under study. Newer compounds have certain advantages over sildenafil, including greater selectivity for PDE-5 compared with other isoenzymes, absence of effect of food on absorption, faster onset and longer duration of action. PDE-5 inhibitors are emerging as novel therapeutic tools with a potential to protect or enhance endothelial function in humans and to selectively improve regional blood flow. The FDA has recently approved a reformulation of sildenafil for the treatment of pulmonary arterial hypertension. Raynaud′s phenomenon, respiratory disorders with ventilation/ perfusion mismatch, congestive cardiac failure, hypertension and stroke are the other conditions in which PDE-5 inhibitors are being tried. It is hoped that this group of drugs will soon emerge as a novel weapon in the armamentarium against various cardiovascular and pulmonary diseases.
Pulmonary arterial hypertension, Raynaud′s disease, sildenafil, tadalafil, vardenafil