ConsumerLab.com uses JavaScript to provide the best possible experience for our content, but your browser has it disabled. Learn how to enable it here.

About ConsumerLab.com

Posted May 3, 2011

FDA Warns: Beware of Bogus STD Products

On May 3, 2011, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced a joint effort to remove products from the market that make unproven claims to treat, cure, and prevent sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). Among the products targeted in today’s action are Medavir, Herpaflor, Viruxo, C-Cure, and Never An Outbreak.

The agencies issued multiple letters to companies warning that their products violate federal law. These products, sold online and in retail outlets, have not been evaluated by the FDA for safety and effectiveness. The joint action is the first step in keeping these unproven items from being sold to the public and preventing consumers from being misled.

The companies that received the warning letters claim that their products treat a range of STDs, including herpes, chlamydia, genital warts, HIV, and AIDS. While some of the companies market these products as dietary supplements, these products are all drug products under the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FD&C Act), as they are offered for the treatment of disease. These drug products, which are offered for the treatment of STDs, may not be introduced into interstate commerce without an FDA-approved new drug application (NDA).

“These products are dangerous because they are targeted to patients with serious conditions, where treatment options proven to be safe and effective are available,” said Deborah M. Autor, director of the Office of Compliance in FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research. “Consumers who buy these products may not seek the medical attention they need and could spread infections to sexual partners.”

Further, under the Federal Trade Commission Act it is illegal to make such unsubstantiated treatment claims.

“These companies are on notice that advertising health benefits that are not supported by rigorous scientific evidence violates the FTC Act,” said David Vladeck, director of the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection. “They also should know that health scams that endanger public health will not be tolerated.”

Consumers should be aware that there are no over-the-counter or online drugs or dietary supplements available to treat or prevent STDs. Appropriate treatment of STDs can only occur under the supervision of a health care professional. There are many FDA-approved medications available for treating these conditions, but they do require a prescription.

“Our Warning Letters give these firms time to voluntarily comply with the law,” said Dara Corrigan, the FDA’s associate commissioner for regulatory affairs. “The FDA will continue to take aggressive enforcement action against firms that market false treatments or cures that may lead to significant public health consequences.” For more information use the link below.