Public urged not to consume unregistered product for managing sexual dysfunction
18 Dec 2009
The Department of Health today (December 18) appealed to people not to buy or use a product named "Vegetal Vigra" for managing sexual dysfunction as it was found to contain sildenafil and tadalafil which may cause serious side effects.
A department spokesman said a sample of the product was obtained from anInternet auction website recently.
Laboratory tests on the product showed the presence of sildenafil and tadalafil.
The spokesman said the product was not a registered pharmaceutical product in Hong Kong.
A department spokesman explained that both sildenafil and tadalafil are western medicines usually used for treating male sexual dysfunction. Their side effects include low blood pressure, headache, vomiting, dizziness, and transient vision disturbances. It may interact with nitrates found in some prescription drugs (such as nitroglycerin for treatment of angina) and may lower blood pressure of patients to dangerous levels.
“Improper use of sildenafil and tadalafil may pose serious health risks, especially for patients with heart problems,” the spokesman said.
Under the Pharmacy and Poisons Ordinance, products containing any of these two ingredients must be registered before sale and can be sold only on a doctor's prescription and under supervision of a pharmacist.
The spokesman urged people not to sell products of unknown or doubtful composition.
He said sale of unregistered pharmaceutical products was an offence under the Pharmacy and Poisons Ordinance. The maximum penalty is a fine of $100,000 and two years' imprisonment.
People who have bought the product are advised not to take it. They are urged to seek advice from their doctors if feeling unwell after consuming the product.
They should destroy and dispose of the product or submit it to the department's Pharmaceutical Service at 3/F, Public Health Laboratory Centre, 382 Nam Cheong Street, Kowloon, during office hours. If they have any enquiries, there is a hotline 2572 2068 which operates during office hours.
The spokesman urged people with sexual dysfunction to consult healthcare professionals for advice if necessary.