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Drugs

Viagra Alternative Found Over-the-Counter Contains ... Viagra's Active Ingredient

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Wed, Sep 19, 2012 at 12:55 PM

click to enlarge DIANA / FLICKR
  • Diana / Flickr
If you ever wanted to try Viagra without the embarrassing visit to the doctor or the street-dealer prices, now's your chance.

Apparently an L.A.-based company named Body Basics Inc. inadvertently let that cat out of the bag via an over-the-counter product it calls ACTRA-Sx 500 Dietary Supplement Capsules.

The FDA has, unfortunately, recently announced a recall of the pills ...

... but that was just last week. So you might still be able to find some. Just sayin.'

The FDA says the ACTRA contains sildenafil citrate, "the active ingredient used in an FDA-approved drug to treat Erectile Dysfunction (ED)."

Here's the problem, according to the feds:

The supplement, which is billed on some sites as "a natural alternative to Viagra," doesn't list that it actually is, sort of, Viagra.

And that could be a problem not only for the makers of legit, prescription boner pills that spend millions on approval and marketing. It could be a problem if you have a heart condition. The FDA:

Use of this product may pose a threat to consumers because it may interact with nitrates found in some prescription drugs (such as nitroglycerin) and may lower blood pressure to dangerous levels. Consumers with diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol or heart disease often take nitrates.

Of course, getting free press (ahem) for "accidentally" putting real boner juice in your otherwise useless pills is probably a boon for business.

And here's the thing: They did it before! The FDA warned in 2006 that another ACTRA product might contain ...

... analogues of either sildenafil or a pharmaceutical ingredient called vardenafil. Vardenafil is the active ingredient in Levitra, a prescription drug that, like Viagra, is approved in the United States to treat ED.

Way to go, Body Basics marketing department. We assume our free sample is in the mail.

[@dennisjromero / djromero@laweekly.com / @LAWeeklyNews]

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