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Absolutely anyone can now buy Viagra (but it's still a bit of a ball ache...)

Posted by
Tom Victor
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Ever since just before the turn of the century, Viagra has been the only erectile dysfunction drug most of us will be able to name. This is despite only a small handful of people actually using the stuff.

It has accounted for the overwhelming bulk of its given market to the point where it has effectively become slang for drugs of its kind in general, but was previously only available to those with prescriptions.

However, that is now changing, with the Viagra Connect pill available to anyone suffering from impotence, prescription or not.

Still, while the Pfizer-manufactured pill is being introduced in a number of pharmacies, that doesn’t mean it’ll be as easy as going to a shop, paying for it right away and leaving.

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As reported by the BBC, a few groups will be prevented from purchasing the drug.

It won’t be available to under-18s, while men will not be able to access it if they are not medically fit to have sex – so if you’ve got significant heart problems it’s probably a no.

While Viagra relaxes muscles and helps blood flow to the penis, the things that make it work for that purpose can also make it a no-no for those with shortness of breath or issues with blood vessels.

Generally speaking, you’ll need to have a quick chat with the pharmacist at the pharmacy in question – this can be in private, rather than in view of all the other customers – and they’ll likely ask you a few questions before making the call on whether you’re fit to take the pills.

And yes, that’ll often mean questions about your sex life – just so you’re prepared.

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If you’ve been prescribed Viagra in the past and were wondering whether this changes your situation, you don’t need to worry.

Prescriptions will still be available, but this is an additional way in which folks can get hold of the stuff.

The aim of the rollout is to break down stigma about erectile dysfunction and encourage more people to seek help or medication for the issue, which is thought to affect up to one in five adult men.

Absolutely anyone can now buy Viagra (but it's still a bit of a ball ache...)

In summary:

1. It’s £19.99 for a pack of four

2. You’re advised to take a maximum of one 50mg tablet per day, regardless of how often you’re having sex

3. Don’t take it if you’re on nitrate pills or taking poppers

4. Tell your pharmacist if you’re on any other medication and they’ll let you know if there’s a clash

5. It does, on occasion, lead to prolonged and painful erections. This is rare, but if it happens to you then you should seek immediate medical assistance

6. Other side effects which can leave you requiring urgent attention have been known to include chest pains, sudden decrease or loss of vision, allergic reactions, seizures or fits

7. There are also some less urgent side effects, including headaches, dizziness and nausea

8. Some 14,000 UK stores will stock the pills, including major pharmacy chains.

9. You can also order them from online pharmacies, but you’ll still require a virtual consultation before getting approved.

(Images: Getty)