Sexual enhancement pills often have ridiculous names – this brand is one example of the dozens of shady supplements available through the internet, adult bookstores, and other retail outlets. The Food and Drug Administration continues to warn consumers that many of these pills illegally contain generic versions of prescription drugs such as Viagra and Levitra, making them potentially fatal for men taking nitrates for heart problems. .
(Courtesy of the FDA)
CLEVELAND, Ohio – In the latest in a series of Food and Drug Administration warnings, the agency tells consumers not to buy or use more than 20 “natural” male enhancement supplements that are tainted with drugs hidden pharmaceuticals.
The supplements all contain the generic form of Viagra or Levitra, drugs approved by the FDA and used to treat erectile dysfunction. They almost all have hilarious names, too – from the subtle “Maxman” and “Vigor” to the puzzle “Black Ant King” and direct to “Sex Men” and “Stiff Nights”.
Many contaminated products are made in foreign countries and are marketed en masse via email and Facebook. Translations of product names lead to phrases you might never expect to see in a press release from a federal agency:
“FDA laboratory analysis confirmed that bigger, longer, longer, more sperm (sic) contains sildenafil, the active ingredient in the FDA-approved prescription drug Viagra, used to treat erectile dysfunction (ED). “
All kidding aside, the products are dangerous, and there are a lot of them out there – the FDA estimates they found over 300 of these products in a few years as of 2011 – primarily promoted for weight loss, l sexual enhancement, and bodybuilding. Usually, the products contain prescription drugs or their generic equivalents, or other ingredients such as steroids or amphetamines.
The FDA regulates dietary supplements under a set of rules set out in the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act of 1994. Under these rules, the open market is the testing ground for supplement safety: manufacturers are responsible for developing safe products, and the FDA takes action if necessary if adverse events occur. More often than not, the agency informs consumers of potential health risks through warnings.
Products like those in this most recent warning set (all of which can be found here) are unsafe because consumers who use the products without knowing the drug is present can experience life-threatening interactions with other drugs they are aware of. takes. Viagra and similar drugs can interact with nitrates, which are commonly found in prescription drugs such as nitroglycerin, and can cause dizziness, fainting, and even a heart attack or stroke.
In 2013, a Kansas City woman sued the adult bookstore that sold one of the products, Stiff Nights, after her husband died of cardiac arrest following a severe drop in blood pressure. The FDA had previously warned against sildenafil in pills in 2009.
Generally, the FDA cautions consumers to be wary of any supplement that makes claims that are far-fetched or too good to be true; “Hard Wang” pills, for example, happily promise “to increase your libido, control, stamina and sperm count” while “Maxman” promises to “change your sex life ‘ho hum’ by meeting it. more exciting (sic) than you “have ever experienced.”
Also, avoid any product claiming to be an alternative to prescription drugs and mass email products, the FDA advises. And if that isn’t enough on its own, the agency also suggests avoiding any products that have their own disclaimers warning consumers that use of the product may result in a positive drug test for the drug. ‘performance improvement.
In fact, you can learn a lot about how dangerous these supplements are by reading their warnings and warnings. When a supplement manufacturer uses the foul language normally found in the fine print of side effect signs on drug labels (do not take more than one capsule in 60 hours, do not take with other drugs, not intended for pregnant women) is one can assume that there is something more than astragalus and “Chinese Dodder Seeds” inside.
But make no mistake, many don’t give any warning.
For a full list of FDA notices, visit its public notification page. Consumers should stop supplements and throw them away immediately. If you have had an adverse event, contact your doctor.
If you have taken any of these supplements and have had a side effect or adverse event, report it to the FDA’s MedWatch Safety Information and Adverse Event Reporting Program by completing an online form. or by calling 1-800-332-1088 to request a form. .