“Sexual Enhancement” Supplement – Herberex – Recalled Over Safety Concerns
By Greg Webb, January 2, 2015
Herberex is a drug sold in Canada and over the internet for ‘sexual enhancement’. According to the promotional material, “Herberex is made with 100% all-natural, organic, high-quality ingredients. To ensure the safety and quality of our product we manufacture in a cGMP certified facility… Every ingredient is analytically tested for chemicals, heavy metals, pesticides and common male enhancement steroids and every batch holds a certificate of analysis with these results. Herberex is pre-registered with FDA, Canada Health Board and European Health Board for importation. While Herberex only contains all natural ingredients, it is always suggested to you consult a licensed physician before use to ensure that you aren’t allergic to any of the natural ingredients.”
Last week Health Canada tested Herberex and found an undeclared drug, tadalafil – the active ingredient in Cialis. The manufacturer, Empire Health Distribution is recalling the drug from all Canadian stores but there is not much information on whether this is happening in the United States as well.
This is yet another example of the potential dangers of certain dietary supplements, an industry that is essentially unregulated in the United States. The blurb above mentions the FDA with the word, “pre-registered”. Pre-registered does not mean the same as FDA approval—it simply means that paperwork has been filled out, without legitimate testing or scientific studies to corroborate claims made by the company.
Herberex claims to improve male sexuality—herbally stimulating the libido, increasing stamina and longevity, improving sperm count and more. It contains a mixture of ginseng and other exotic sounding ingredients. The emphasis may be on ‘herbal’ as a substitute for all natural but tadalafil can be dangerous for many people. The list of side effects includes heart issues.
According to the recall, “Individuals with heart problems including high blood pressure, a history of heart attack, stroke, abnormal heartbeat or chest pain are at higher risk of cardiovascular side-effects if they engage in sexual activity. Other possible side-effects of using tadalafil include headache, facial flushing, indigestion, dizziness, abnormal vision and hearing loss.”
Taking drugs to enhance sexual function, drugs like Viagra, Cialis and Levitra, are acceptable and can be relatively safe, when taken under the supervision of your doctor. Erectile issues can often be symptomatic of a medical condition so you should consult a medical professional. Drug supplements are not a safe alternative to getting informed medical care. The makers of supplements are business people, not trained medical professionals or medical researchers, and they rarely work in collaboration with medical professionals, and therefore are unlikely to feel much of a duty to ensure consumers of their products are following sound health and wellness practices. See your doctor.