Can Tadalafil Be Split?

The pharmacist discusses why it isn't recommended to split tadalafil tablets, but why it isn't necessarily dangerous in all situations either.

Can Tadalafil Be Split?
Jun 18, 2020

Yankel asked

Can a 20 mg tadalafil tablet (generic version from Cialis) be cut in half?

At a glance

  • Tadalafil isn't recommended to be split due to its irregular shape and 'film-coating'.
  • Splitting tadalfil however, does not negatively affect how the drug works or its release mechanism.

Answer

Tadalafil (generic for Cialis) tablets are not recommended to be cut or split for a few reasons, including:

  • Most tadalafil products (including the brand Cialis) are an irregular shape, making them difficult to split accurately, which could lead to variations in dosing. Additionally, none of the tablets are scored, making them especially difficult to accurately split.
  • All tadalafil tablets are film-coated. Cutting, splitting, or crushing them compromises this coating.

Now, splitting tadalafil tablets isn't a complete 'no-no' like it is some drug product, such as those that are 'extended-release' or 'controlled-release'. Splitting these types of drugs can lead to the entire dose being delivered at once, as opposed to over a period of time, as designed. This isn't the issue for tadalafil though.

As mentioned, tadalafil tablets are 'film-coated'. This doesn't delay the release of the drug but serves other purposes, including:

  • Masks the bitter taste the drug is known to have.
  • Makes it easier to swallow (the film-coating acts like a lubricant when moistened).
  • Improves the long-term stability of the drug by protecting it from environmental factors, like moisture and light.

I do want to note that some drugs that have film-coatings use it to modify the release of the active ingredient, that's just not the case for tadalafil.

So, going back to the main point here, tadalafil isn't recommended to be split for the reasons above, but it certainly could be done without harming the drug or ruining some sort of controlled-release mechanism.

Tadalafil comes in a number of dosages (2.5 mg, 5 mg, 10 mg, and 20 mg), so your best bet would likely be to just find the dose you need and take it without needing to split.

Having said all this, I know drugs are expensive and oftentimes, tadalafil isn't covered under insurance or is limited to a low quantity per month. Splitting the tablets could be a way to save some money but I would recommend discussing this with your doctor first to be sure that a small variation in dose (from inaccurate splitting) doesn't represent any sort of danger to you.

  • Cialis Prescribing Information, Eli Lilly
  • Using medication: Oral medications, NCBI

Ready for a more personal experience with your meds?