Toggle navigation
Toggle search

Alprostadil (Inside the urethra (Urine tube))

Alprostadil (al-PROS-ta-dil)

Treats impotence.

Brand Name(s):


There may be other brand names for this medicine.

When This Medicine Should Not Be Used:

This medicine is not right for everyone. Do not use it if you are allergic to alprostadil or if you have an abnormally formed penis, sickle cell anemia, or leukemia.

How to Use This Medicine:


  • Your doctor will show you how to use the medicine.
  • This medicine should come with a Medication Guide. Ask your pharmacist for a copy if you do not have one.
  • You should have an erection about 15 minutes after using the medicine. The erection should last about 1 hour.
  • Store unopened foil pouches in the refrigerator. Take the medicine out of the refrigerator about 30 minutes before you use it, and let it warm to room temperature.
  • Sit, stand, or walk for about 10 minutes after you have put in the suppository. This will improve blood circulation, so you have a better erection. Do not lie down right after you insert the medicine.
  • Put the cap back on the applicator, and use the foil pouch to throw the applicator away. Only use each applicator once.
  • Keep the medicine away from heat. It may not work if exposed to temperatures above 86 degrees F.

Drugs and Foods to Avoid:

Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.

  • Some medicines can affect how alprostadil works. Tell your doctor if you are taking a blood thinner, such as warfarin.

Warnings While Using This Medicine:

  • Tell your doctor if you have a history of dizziness, fainting, low blood pressure, or heart problems. Tell your doctor if your partner is pregnant.
  • An erection that lasts longer than 4 hours can be dangerous and cause permanent damage.
  • Do not use alprostadil more than 2 times each day.
  • This medicine may make you dizzy. Do not drive or do anything that could be dangerous until you know how this medicine affects you.
  • If your partner is pregnant, you must use a condom during sex.
  • This medicine will not prevent pregnancy or protect you or your partner from diseases such as syphilis, herpes, or HIV. Use a latex condom during sex for protection.
  • Keep all medicine out of the reach of children. Never share your medicine with anyone.

Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine:

Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:

  • Allergic reaction: Itching or hives, swelling in your face or hands, swelling or tingling in your mouth or throat, chest tightness, trouble breathing
  • Aching or warmth in your penis, testicles, legs, or groin
  • An erection that lasts longer than 4 hours
  • Bleeding from your urethra
  • Dizziness or fainting
  • Reddened penis

If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088

Last Updated: 5/1/2020

The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed medical professional should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Call 911 for all medical emergencies. Links to other sites are provided for information only -- they do not constitute endorsements of those other sites.

All rights reserved

A.D.A.M. content is best viewed in IE9 or above, Firefox and chrome browser.

We are physicians, hospitals and communities working together to help you live better.