Hims vs Viagra for ED

Hims vs Viagra: Which Treatment is Better for Erectile Dysfunction (ED)?

Everyone knows the name Viagra, but what about Hims, the newer online telemedicine company? It offers the same meds for ED, but are they FDA approved, and how do they compare to Viagra in terms of cost and efficacy?

 

For a long time, Viagra was one of the few FDA approved ED medications on the market. Today, online players like Hims and Roman have emerged to sell Viagra and other generic versions – all online. And not from a sketchy black market site either. Let’s explain how Hims’ prescription ED meds differ from Viagra, and what’s exactly the same.

 

But first: How common is erectile dysfunction these days?

 

Before we dive into Hims vs Viagra, it’s important to realize that erectile dysfunction is way more common than you’d think. That’s because most men don’t exactly sit around discussing their bedroom woes. Erectile dysfunction, sometimes called impotence, is the technical term for not being able to get or maintain a firm enough erection for sex. It’s a very real medical condition, often with devastating psychological effects, but thankfully quality treatments exist for most healthy men.

 

ED obviously feels like a tough problem to deal with, and it can be embarrassing — both in the moment and to talk to a doctor about too). Like it or not, it’s incredibly common, especially as we age. One study found that it impacted 52 percent of men, and that about 40 percent experience it by age 40 while close to 70 percent are impacted by age 70. So if it happens to you, remember that you’re nowhere near alone, and hopefully that makes it feel a little less embarrassing.

 

How to treat ED: Hims vs Viagra

 

As we mentioned before, ED is not something you have to just accept for the rest of your life. You CAN do something about it. So if it’s creating strain in your relationship or hurting your self-confidence, keep reading because ED medicines like Viagra and others offered by Hims can likely help.

 

The medical field offers pharmaceuticals with a high rate of success treating this problem. Viagra’s a tremendously popular one—but you may have also heard about Cialis, Stendra, Staxyn, Levitra and other options that are being studied. Viagra’s the best known because it was the first to market, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s more effective than the others.

 

Since Viagra and the other ED pills we mentioned above require a prescription, men have typically acquired them through their primary care physician (and often paid a premium to do so).

 

That’s very different from Hims, a well-funded telemedicine startup offering online doctor visits and Viagra online, in addition to other affordable prescription ED drugs. Essentially Hims makes it easy to get Viagra (as well as generic, non-name-brand equivalents) online without physically seeing a doctor. A physician is still very much involved in the process (we’ll tell you exactly how that works later on), but Hims offers a much simpler, less embarrassing, and lower cost way to acquire the same ED meds your doctor might typically prescribe — INCLUDING Viagra.

 

 

Hims ED vs Viagra: How do they differ and which is better?

 

Given that both Viagra and Hims provide the same drug with the same active ingredient (Sildenafil), this is a bit of a trick question. That said, there are a few key differences. If you take ED meds from Hims, you’re getting the same chemical compounds as you would from doctor-prescribed Viagra. Sildenafil is approved by the FDA to treat ED, and it works by giving you better blood flow to your penis. All in all, the mechanism is pretty simple: more blood flow = a better erection and a harder penis.

 

Viagra is a dependable medication that’s been prescribed for decades, and thus so are the exact same meds offered by Hims. Evidence from my own experience using both can serve as anecdotal confirmation that it works, and after many successful clinical trials, the FDA’s approval should help you further trust Viagra — whether from your primary care physician or Hims.

 

So, what’s the real difference between Hims and Viagra? It really comes down to three factors:

One ED medication vs several

 

If the active ingredient is the same, then the first big difference between Viagra and Hims ED meds is that Hims also offers additional generic versions of the drug. As we noted before, there are many different brand names for ED pills with Sildenafil — for the purposes of this comparison, we just analyzed the one that’s sold under the brand name Viagra, which is made by Pfizer, But Hims also offers several other sildenafil pills including both branded and generic Viagra.

 

If that wasn’t clear: Pfizer is a big drug company that has been around for a long time, and it produces a wide range of FDA-approved drugs, including Viagra for ED. By contrast, Hims is a newish internet startup that distributes (but does not manufacture) a range of medications for common male medical conditions that — in addition to erectile dysfunction — include hair loss, performance anxiety, and premature ejaculation.

 

While Viagra held the patent for sildenafil for many years, that patent expired in 2012 and opened the door to other companies being able to sell generics. Hims pounced on this opportunity and began selling Viagra as well as generic Sildenafil. Since the active ingredients are packaged in the same way and well-tested, the following three options should bring about the same desired effects when treating ED:

 

    • Viagra from your doctor
    • Viagra from Hims
    • Generic Sildenafil from Hims

 

How you get a prescription

 

Like all traditional prescription medications, if you want to get Viagra you need to talk to your doctor. If the doctor thinks you need it, you’ll get a prescription for you to fill at the pharmacy.

 

Hims ED is different because you order it online.  The company takes advantage of new technology to give you an actual medical consultation over the internet. Basically, you get assessed by a medical professional through your computer or phone instead of having to go to the doctor’s office in person. You simply fill out an online questionnaire that asks about your condition and symptoms, as well as other basic health questions. A licensed doctor then reviews your case and prescribes the medication to you if you are deemed a good fit for treatment. Your meds are then sent to you through the mail on a monthly basis in discrete packaging (so you don’t have to advertise to your neighbors that you need a little help getting it up.)

 

Hims saves you time, since you don’t have to make an appointment, get to the doctor, then go to the pharmacy to pick up your medication every time you run out. And – as we’ll get to next – it saves you MONEY. 

 

The Cost of Hims vs Viagra

 

There’s a huge price difference between Viagra from a doctor and prescription ED pills from Hims. There are a couple ways Hims makes getting erectile dysfunction medication cheaper. The first is that they can save you a trip to the doctor. Depending on your health insurance’s co-pay, a visit for ED could be as much a few hundred bucks. With Hims, the doctor’s visit cost is rolled into the introductory offer. So that saves you quite a bit, and makes it easier to get a prescription since you don’t have to go to visit your doctor in person. 

 

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Hims ED and Viagra: A Side by Side Comparison

 

This chart will help you compare the major differences and similarities between Viagra from Hims and Viagra from your own personal or family doctor. Hopefully it will help you decide which one is best for your own needs.

 

 

Sildenafil Comparison: Hims ED vs Viagra

 
 
How to Purchase Forhims.com In pharmacy
Medicine Price Sildenafil – $6/dose
Generic Viagra – $34/dose
Viagra – $68/dose
Tadalafil (Generic Cialis) – $8/dose
On average, $70 per tablet; May be covered according to your copay by your health insurance plan
Doctor’s Visit Cost Free Depends on co-pay
Subscription Available? Yes No
Active Ingredient Sildenafil Sildenafil
Brand(s)

Viagra (by Pfizer) + generics

Viagra (by Pfizer)
Doctor’s Visit Required? Online Go to doctor’s office
How to Obtain Order online Get prescription from doctor and pick up in pharmacy
Prescription Required? Yes Yes
Drug Form Tablet Tablet
FDA-Approved Yes Yes
Website

 

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More info on erectile dysfunction meds offered by Hims and Viagra

 

As we mentioned above, both Viagra and Hims offer the active ingredient sildenafil, which directly addresses the blood flow problem associated with ED. While sildenafil can come in different forms—like liquid—from other brands, both of these companies sell easy-to-take tablets you swallow with water. The way you take ED meds from either company is the same: orally, about an hour before you want to be sexually active. In general, Viagra from both companies typically take effect in 30 minutes to 60 minutes after ingestion.

 

 

Considerations to Keep in Mind

 

Sildenafil is a well-tested, FDA-approved medication that has been in use for decades. It’s only intended for use in men, so it’s not something you should consider taking if you’re a woman.

 

Even though it’s widely used and trusted, it’s a medication, which means it can come with side effects. The good news is that because it is so widely used and studied, the side effects are well understood, and known to be minor and infrequent.

 

The most likely side effects you could experience from generic ED medication or Viagra include muscle aches, headaches, dizziness, facial flush, nasal congestion, digestive problems or vision concerns. It’s rarer, but you could experience an erection that won’t go down. This might sound like a good thing, but trust me it’s not. It could actually result in damage to your penis if you don’t get medical attention.

 

If you choose Hims, make sure you are honest and accurate in answering their online questions so that the doctor can rule out potential drug interactions or other issues that might make Sildenafil not the right medicine for you. The same honesty disclosure should be said when acquiring Viagra from your doctor as well, as patients aren’t always 100% forthcoming about embarrassing health conditions, even with their trusted MD!

 

The doctor will prescribe you a specific dosage of sildenafil. With Hims, it’s generally 10 to 20 mg but could differ by what the doctor prescribes. With Viagra, it ranges from 25 to 100 mg, with the usual dosage being 50 mg.

 

It’s a drug you take when you need it, not more than once a day. And you should follow the exact dosage the doctor recommends. Anything different could potentially have risks or increase the chances of side effects. If you feel like your dosage isn’t working for you, talk to a doctor before you make a change on your own. Hims makes it easy to ask your doctor questions – you can just do it online, so don’t hesitate to reach out if you have questions about your medication.

 

As I mentioned above, ED can sometimes be a symptom of a separate underlying medical problem. If something more than just your performance in the bedroom seems off, it might be a good idea to see your primary care doctor. And again, if you are going with an online provider like Hims you should answer their questions as accurately as you can, so that the doctor has a good picture of what’s going on with you. 

 

Personal experience: So, I never had the courage to talk to my primary care doctor about ED. (In fact, I’m pretty lazy about getting my annual physicals too, but that’s a totally different issue.) So I’ve never tried “real” Viagra. BUT, as soon as I heard about the online telemedicine providers like Hims, I went for it! First of all, the generic Sildenafil WORKS for me for sure. For sure! Secondly, it was much less … awkward to fill out the forms online. Since I live in California, my state’s regulations allowed me to not even have to speak with the doctor, which was really nice.

 

 

Do we recommend Hims or Viagra?

 

We feel strongly about going with online telemedicine providers like Hims over the traditional route like Viagra. That’s because it’s so much more hassle (and expense) to go to a doctor, pay for the visit, go to the pharmacy, and overpay again. Basically, we think you waste too much time and money going with the traditional method.  Not to mention the awkwardness you save not talking to your doctor face-to-face. 

 

We do see two reasons that would make the traditional route better – the first is if you have an amazing insurance plan that covers all of the doctor’s visit and the medication. In that case, you are still going to spend time going to the doctor and  pharmacy to get your pills, but the cost savings might not be much of a lure. The second is if you are experiencing other health problems, as your ED might be caused by an underlying condition. If you’re worried that might be the case, your primary care physician will be able to better assess your overall health. 

 

In the end, we’re all about you making the choice that’s right for you. Hopefully this comparison will give you the details you need to make that decision. Either way, Viagra (generic or Viagra) can help you with ED — now you just need to choose how you get it!

 

We recommend Hims because they offer a free virtual doctor’s visit and great bulk discounts. You may also want to look into a comparable telemedicine startup called Roman, which also offers Viagra and other similar ED meds online. (They too are offering a free online doctor’s visit.) Better yet, why not try both and see which works for you?

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