Consumers warned of adulterated erectile pills

Published: Fri 7 May 2010 10:49 AM
Consumers advised to stop taking adulterated products for erectile dysfunction
Medsafe orders immediate recall of SZM Formula for Men, Stallion, Volcanic and Tomcat Ali
Director-General of Health Stephen McKernan today advised consumers to immediately stop taking the following adulterated products for erectile dysfunction – SZM Formula for Men, Stallion, Volcanic and Tomcat Ali, citing significant health risks from their use.
Medsafe has ordered the immediate recall of all batches of the four products after tests showed that they contain the undeclared prescription medicine tadalafil. Medsafe’s investigations found the products were being sold by retail in health food stores and pharmacies as well as “adult” shops and over the Internet.
“Consumers should immediately stop taking these products and seek medical advice if they are taking other medicines or if they have felt unwell when taking any of these products,” Mr McKernan said.
The four products are being promoted and sold in New Zealand for sexual enhancement or the treatment of erectile dysfunction. The Institute of Environmental Science and Research (ESR) has confirmed that samples of these products submitted by Medsafe contained significant quantities of tadalafil.
Tadalafil, which is the active ingredient of the prescription medicine Cialis, is known to interfere with some heart medications; its use can be harmful and even fatal for some people.
Mr McKernan said ESR’s test results also indicated that rogue players behind these products now appear to be adopting a new approach in adulterating them. The adulterant in these products was added to the material of the capsule shell rather than to the contents, which are the components checked during routine screening by regulators.
The Director-General of Health further warned that the practice of adulterating capsule shells may not be confined to just these four products.
“This is a cautionary tale for consumers. I advise them to treat products purportedly for the treatment of erectile dysfunction and products that claim to improve male sexual performance that are offered for sale without a prescription with extreme caution, and to seek medical advice before using them.”
The medicines legislation charges sponsors, distributors, retailers and importers with the responsibility for the products they sell and requires them to be aware of all the active ingredients they contain and to seek approval prior to selling them, if required by legislation.

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