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What is Caverject (Alprostadil) prescribed for?

Caverject (Alprostadil) is a medication used to treat impotence in men.  It is self-injected into the penis within a short time before sexual intercourse. The medication creates an erection by relaxing the smooth muscle tissue and dilating the major artery in the penis, which then enhances the blood flow to the penis, thus creating an erection.

This medication comes in four different doses, which are 5mcg, 10mcg, 20mcg, and 40mcg. Remember, your dose is based on your medical background and your overall response to the treatment. If your doctor or pharmacist has given you some information in the form of a pamphlet, take the time to read up on this drug, and if you have any questions or concerns regarding this medication, please consult your doctor.

Make sure you learn how to properly store and discard needles and medical supplies safely; consult your pharmacist or doctor on how.

For each dose it is best to use a 29 to 30 gauge one-half inch need for injecting the dose. When injecting the dose it is best to be sitting or slightly reclined. Retract the foreskin in uncircumcised patients. Grasp the head of the penis with the thumb and forefinger and stretch it length wise along the thigh. It is best then to wipe the intended injection are with an alcohol swab, Insert needleoeroendicular to the long dorsolateral penile axis in the proximal  third of the penis. Avoid moving the syringe and do not bend the needle. It is also good to avoid visible veins during an injection. 

Witch each individual dose, it is best to alternate the side of the penis which is injected into.  Once done compress the site of the injection with a alcohol sway or sterile gauze for 5 minutes. Keep in mind that this medication is intended for singular patient use only, and should be discard right away after use.


If you erection lasts for 4 to 6 hours, seek medical help right away. If this problem is not treated within immediately, penile tissue may end up being damaged or permanent loss of potency.

To minimize chances of prolonged erection, this medication should be give slowly to the lowest effective dose. In addition, patients who have conditions with sickle cell anemia or sickle cell trait, multiple myeloma, or leukemia, should not be taking this medication.

Side Effects

Side effects for Caverject are: injection site reactions (mild/moderate pain, irritation, or slight bleeding), unusual discharge from your penis, pain in your penis/urethra/testicles, headache, dizziness, back pain, a rash on the skin of your penis, itching/warmth/numbness of your penis, cough, stuffy nose,cold symptoms, and flu symptoms.

More uncommon side effects for Caverject can be: redness/tenderness/swelling of the penis, or lumps or unusual curving of the penis.

If any side effects become unmanageable speak with your doctor or pharmacist for help in managing any side effects. For any serious side effects that occur speak with your doctor right away for further treatment options.


What happens if I suddenly stop taking this medication?

 You may not be able to sustain a suitable erection for sexual intercourse.


What is the best dosage to take for Caverject?

Your doctor will be able to determine the best dosage from the initial diagnosis.


How long does it take for this medication to become active?

After being injected, this medication can work within 20 minutes and can last up to an hour. 


What is the best way to store this medication?

This medication is stored at room temperature and should be kept away from children and pets. 


 How do I dispose of this medication?

Do not throw away this medication in wastewater. Some medications can be thrown away in dry waste, and some require a little preparation for disposal. If you are uncertain how to dispose of this medication speak with your pharmacist to safely dispose of any unwanted or experienced medication.

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