Counterfeit Viagra Sales Raise Side-Effect Concerns

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Viagra Among Counterfeit Sex Drugs

With 1 in 4 men suffering from erectile dysfunction in China, sales of viagra are on the up. Fearing the embarrassment of consulting a doctor in regards to such issues, Chinese men are increasingly turning to popular online retail sites, as well as local pharmacies, to purchase the pills. As consumption of sexual enhancement medicines increases, so do their side-effects.

The meaning of saving face in China has remained a constant throughout time; it signifies a desire of the Chinese people to avoid humiliation or embarrassment. This core social value rings true in regards to erectile dysfunction, being one of the major health issues with Chinese mens’ desperate attempts to avoid going to the hospital. Instead, they turn to TaoBao, Baidu and Tmall.

Wen Deyuan, a sexologist and president of Hunan Institute of Sexual Health, stated that, “Over 60 percent of Chinese men between the ages of 40 and 70 have erectile dysfunction”, reported the Global Times.

The key players in the sexual enhancement pills market are Pfizer, Eli Lilly, Johnson & Johnson, Apricus Biosciences and Dong-A Pharmaceutical. Although the erectile dysfunction pills often prove effective, they bring with them unexpected side-effects. These range from minor complications, such as headaches and nausea, to more serious issues, such as liver failure, stroke, and in some cases, even death.

Underground labs that manufacture enhancement pills often advertise counterfeit drugs as natural herbal pills or dietary supplements, when in fact, these are just cover-up names to continue the selling thereof. Sildenafil citrate, also known as viagra, is the key ingredient added to these “herbal supplements.”

Last September, here in Nanjing, 40 pharmacies and stores suspected of selling counterfeit Viagra were raided, resulting in over 25 suspects being arrested.

In 2016, the China Food and Drug Administration issued notices that warn consumers of the dangers of such medicine and called for severe punishment and criminal charges on companies that were exposed to having added Sildenafil in their dietary supplements, reports the Global Times. The effort on China’s part to crackdown on the manufacturing of fake sexual enhancement pills continues to be a work in progress.

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Stacy Dahl
Stacy Dahl is an American expat living in Nanjing, writing for for her university's newspaper throughout college as well as several other magazines and newspapers in Minnesota. In her free time, she enjoys travelling, reading, hiking and satisfying her coffee addiction. Stacy Dahl是一名美国外籍人士,居住在中国南京。 她在大学期间为她的大学报纸以及明尼苏达州的其他几家杂志和报纸写信。 在空闲时间,她喜欢旅行,阅读书籍,徒步旅行,并满足她的咖啡瘾。