Pfizer to Offer Generic Version of Viagra

Pfizer’s will sell both name-brand Viagra and it’s own generic version sildenafil citrate. | Associated Press

Pfizer’s will sell both name-brand Viagra and it’s own generic version sildenafil citrate. | Associated Press

Drug companies will get their first shot at introducing generic alternatives to Viagra next week, when drugmaker Pfizer Inc.'s patent-protected monopoly expires Monday.

The drug maker will sell the new version - a white pill called Sildenafil - for about $33 a pill, roughly half the cost of name brand Viagra. Generic maker Teva Pharmaceuticals can start selling its version then, but isn't disclosing the price. For patients with insurance, a month's prescription of six to 10 pills may be available for as little as a $20 copay. AP also notes that next summer, when more generic impotence pills have flooded the market, prices could drop by as much as 90 percent.

The hope is that men who have not previously sought help will now be more likely to do so, although men with heart problems or taking "interfering medicines" will still need a prescription to purchase Viagra. It is now the second most-popular drug to treat erectile dysfunction behind Eli Lilly's Cialis.