DETROIT (WJBK) - A local attorney launched a lawsuit against Sunoco gas stations in Detroit for selling male enhancement pills that contain a prescription drug ingredient typically found in Viagra and could lead to serious health risks like death or penis damage.
Attorney Robert Tauler of Tauler Smith LLP, an expert in adulterated supplements and false advertising, says Sunoco gas stations have been selling various brands of male enhancement pills that contain a drug typically prescribed by doctors.
Tauler says the pills are being sold under the guise of being "all natural," but they actually contain an ingredient called sildenafil, which is the active ingredient in the prescription drug Viagra. He says taking a prescription drug without the supervision of a doctor can lead to serious health risks, including death, penis damage, stroke, heart attack and loss of vision.
The attorney had at least seven examples of the pills, including Rhino 8 Platinum 8000. On July 16, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, or FDA, issued a warning against taking this product, confirming it contained sildenafil, which could have negative interactions with any medication a man is currently on.
Tauler says they then attempt to sell the drugs under different names. The following is a list of male enhancement pills the FDA says contain the Viagra drug, sildenafil, just since March 28:
The FDA says they've identified an emerging trend where products being sold as dietary supplements actually contain hidden active ingredients that could put someone's health at risk.
Tauler says retailers are still selling these products to this day.
"In my mind it shows a lack of remorse and a lot of money being made," he said.
Tauler says these are high-margin products made in China in large batches for pennies, then sold to retailers cheaply, about $1-2, then sold marked up to $8. He compared taking the pills to playing Russian roulette -- they're made in China without any FDA regulations and without any safety precautions, he said.
The lawsuit was filed on behalf of Houston-based Outlaw Laboratory.
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