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PDE5 inhibitors

Sildenafil (Viagra®, Revatio®), Tadalafil and Vardenafil (Levitra®) are a typetypes of drugs used to treat erectile dysfuntion and pulmonary arterial hypertension. These drugs are known as PDE5 inhibitors.

NICE do not recommend sildenafil, tadalafil or vardenafil as a treatment for brain tumours. It is important to talk to your healthcare team before taking any new medicines or making changes that may affect your treatment.

If you have further questions, need to clarify any of the information on this page, or want to find out more about research and clinical trials, please contact our team:

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Sildenafil, tadalafil, vardenafil and brain tumours

The Repurposing Drugs in Oncology project (ReDO) is working to investigate whether existing drugs could be effective in cancer treatment. PDE5 inhibitors are believed to increase the permeability of the blood brain barrier which could allow other chemotherapy drugs to cross into the brain and be more effective. Therefore the ReDO recommends that further clinical research is carried out, particularly in the case of tumours such as glioblastoma, to see if the drugs could help to enhance other treatments.

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If you need someone to talk to or advice on where to get help, we offer a wide range of inclusive and accessible support services for everyone affected by a brain tumour.