Erectile Dysfunction
Updated: May 23, 2022
The Dangers of Over-the-Counter Pills For ED
Published: Mar 1, 2022

If you have a penis, odds are you will experience ED at some point in your life. Along with the unsettling feeling you get when you don’t know for sure why something is happening with your body, ED is not something most men want to discuss with someone else, be it their partner or their doctor.

ED medications are prescription only, but some marketers take advantage of men’s insecurity with discussing ED with their doctor and tout the value of over-the-counter pills for ED. They hope you will impulsively take the risk and purchase a male enhancement drug — calling these drugs herbal or natural must mean they’re safe, right?

Wrong

Pills sold in adult stores, gas stations, grocery stores, and so on are not prescription medications made by large manufacturers with years of scientific research to back up their safety and effectiveness claims. Over-the-counter Viagra is not Viagra. It may be counterfeit, substandard, adulterated Viagra, but it is not prescription Viagra generic sildenafil because to get these proven medications, you need to see a doctor and get a prescription. Prescription medications should only be purchased in pharmacies after receiving a prescription. Non-prescription supplements should only be purchased from reputable companies that stand by their products.

Risks of Over-the-Counter ED Supplements

Pfizer Global Security used the search term “buy Viagra” to evaluate the companies and drugs that were being sold as Viagra. They found 22 sites. Nearly 80% of the sites they surveyed were selling counterfeits. They chemically evaluated these medications and guess what they found?

  • Blue printer ink
  • Amphetamines
  • Metronidazole, an antibiotic
  • The wrong quantity of active ingredients
  • Binding agents such as drywall
  • Toxic ingredients such as boric acid, floor wax, brick dust, rat poison, and road paint
  • The wrong medications

Pfizer recommends that you ensure your website requires a valid prescription, ensure you see a U.S. address and phone number, and look for Verified Internet Pharmacy Practice Sites.

The U.S. Food & Drug Administration lists public notifications for pages of tainted sexual enhancement products.

Here are just the ones from December 2021:

  • Avaphinal: contains sildenafil, which can lower blood pressure and interfere with nitrates found in some prescription medications.
  • Brahma Male Enhancement: contains sildenafil, which can lower blood pressure and interfere with nitrates found in some prescription medications.
  • Go On Red: contains tadalafil, which can lower blood pressure and interfere with nitrates found in some prescription medications.
  • Hard AF!: contains sildenafil, which can lower blood pressure and interfere with nitrates found in some prescription medications and acetaminophen.
  • Helmi’s Honey VIP: contains tadalafil which can lower blood pressure and interfere with nitrates found in some prescription medications.
  • Jaguar Power: contains sildenafil, which can lower blood pressure and interfere with nitrates found in some prescription medications.
  • Kangaroo Intense Alpha 3000: contains sildenafil, which can lower blood pressure and interfere with nitrates found in some prescription medications.
  • Magnum XXL: contains sildenafil, which can lower blood pressure and interfere with nitrates found in some prescription medications.
  • Pink Pussycat: contains sildenafil, which can lower blood pressure and interfere with nitrates found in some prescription medications.

These sexual enhancement products have sildenafil and tadalafil in them. The question is, how much and what is the purity of these adulterants? These and other products sold over-the-counter are often unproven, unregulated, untested, and capable of causing significant side effects.

Where to Find Legitimate ED Supplements

So, if you aren’t comfortable seeing your doctor about your ED symptoms, but you don’t want to take the chance of putting unknown and potentially harmful chemicals into your body, what other options do you have?

Telemedicine may be just the answer you are looking for. Over the last few years, there have been tremendous changes in how medical care can be delivered. It is now possible to make an appointment online with a licensed medical professional, get an order for any lab work that you need to be done, and receive a prescription for safe and effective medications to treat ED from a doctor who knows your medical history and has experience in prescribing medications to treat ED.

Did you know that ED may be an early warning sign for heart disease? Getting an accurate diagnosis and treatment for ED may ward off serious heart disease down the road as you get appropriate treatments now for ED and any risk factors such as high blood pressure or diabetes.

For example, when you contact Invigor Medical, you will be asked to complete forms providing your medical history. Then you will be set up with an appointment with a licensed medical professional. They can discuss all of your treatment options for ED, from oral medications like sildenafil and tadalafil to injectables like TriMix, a medication that is 95% effective in treating ED.

Natural Alternatives to ED Supplements

While it is not safe to buy male enhancement products that contain hidden drug ingredients or buy prescription medications from businesses that do not require a prescription, there are some natural alternatives to ED supplements that have at least some scientific backing for their efficacy.

  • Dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA): DHEA is a steroid prohormone. Levels decline significantly with age. By the age of 70 to 80, levels may be as low as 10% to 20% of what it was in your youth. DHEA increases nitric oxide levels, which dilate blood vessels which would seem to be a mechanism for how it may contribute to ED. However, double-blind studies have not shown a significant effect of low DHEA on ED risk. More research is needed.
  • L-arginine: L-arginine is an amino acid that is naturally found in food and that boosts nitric oxide levels. Nitric oxide dilates blood vessels entering the penis, allowing blood to flow into the penis and generate an erection. Since oral ED medications also increase nitric oxide, a combination of L-arginine and Viagra can cause a dangerous drop in blood pressure.

Low testosterone can affect libido and increase the risk of ED. However, there are also ways to naturally boost your testosterone levels.

When to Seek Professional Advice

The American Urological Association (AUA) advises that all men with symptoms of ED undergo a thorough medical evaluation. Since ED is a risk marker for underlying cardiovascular disease and other health conditions, it is important to get an accurate diagnosis. In addition, the AUA states that some men may require specialized testing and evaluation and that men with ED should have a morning serum testosterone level measurement.

Men’s Standard Hormone Panel

The AUA also recommends that men with ED consider lifestyle and psychological factors that may contribute to ED, such as:

  • Stress
  • Depression
  • Smoking
  • Excessive alcohol consumption
  • Poor diet
  • Overweight and obesity

The prevalence of ED increases with age, as does cardiovascular disease, heart disease, coronary artery disease, obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure, and low testosterone. See a healthcare provider today to get to the root cause of your ED symptoms. Get answers to your questions. Who knows? You may find out that the fatigue you have been struggling with has a medical basis. Learn more about the connection between low testosterone, anemia, and fatigue.  

If you are still considering OTC pills for ED, the FDA has issued warnings for nearly 300 products that are marketed as dietary supplements that promise to enhance your sexual performance. These products can contain a drug cocktail that can pose serious threats to unsuspecting customers. Unlike prescription medications, dietary supplements may be sold without an FDA evaluation of their safety and effectiveness. These products can interact with medications you are already taking, cause health risks, and contain contaminants. There are safer ways to get ED treatment.

DISCLAIMER

While we strive to always provide accurate, current, and safe advice in all of our articles and guides, it’s important to stress that they are no substitute for medical advice from a doctor or healthcare provider. You should always consult a practicing professional who can diagnose your specific case. The content we’ve included in this guide is merely meant to be informational and does not constitute medical advice.

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