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FDA Recalls Of Dietary Supplements Often Fail To Get Dangerous Products Off Shelves

November 3, 2014: 12:00 AM EST
The FDA recalled 274 dietary supplements between January 2009 and December 2012 because they were adulterated with ingredients that had a reasonable possibility of causing serious harm or death. In a new study that focused on 27 (9.9 percent) of the recalled supplements, Harvard Medical School scientists using gas chromatography/mass spectrometry found that two-thirds containing adulterants were still on store shelves an average of 34.3 months (range 8-52 months) after the FDA recall. Supplements still being sold were adulterated in 85 percent of sports enhancement products, 67 percent of weight loss products, and 20 percent (1/5) of sexual enhancement products. Sixty-five percent of U.S.-produced supplements remained adulterated with banned ingredients.
Pieter A. Cohen et al., "Presence of Banned Drugs in Dietary Supplements Following FDA Recalls. ", JAMA, November 03, 2014, © American Medical Association
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