Sildenafil: from angina to erectile dysfunction to pulmonary hypertension and beyond

Nat Rev Drug Discov. 2006 Aug;5(8):689-702. doi: 10.1038/nrd2030.


In less than 20 years, the first selective type 5 phosphodiesterase inhibitor, sildenafil, has evolved from a potential anti-angina drug to an on-demand oral treatment for erectile dysfunction (Viagra), and more recently to a new orally active treatment for pulmonary hypertension (Revatio). Here we describe the key milestones in the development of sildenafil for these diverse medical conditions, discuss the advances in science and clinical medicine that have accompanied this journey and consider possible future indications for this versatile drug.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Angina Pectoris / drug therapy*
  • Cerebrovascular Circulation / drug effects
  • Erectile Dysfunction / drug therapy*
  • Heart Failure / drug therapy
  • Humans
  • Hypertension, Pulmonary / drug therapy*
  • Male
  • Phosphodiesterase Inhibitors / therapeutic use*
  • Piperazines / pharmacology
  • Piperazines / therapeutic use*
  • Purines
  • Sildenafil Citrate
  • Sulfones


  • Phosphodiesterase Inhibitors
  • Piperazines
  • Purines
  • Sulfones
  • Sildenafil Citrate