5-Hour ENERGY possibly linked to 13 deaths — and ‘spontaneous abortion’

(Photo credit: 5-Hour ENERGY)

This has been building for years. It was only a matter of time before the U.S. Government started to prowl around caffeinated drinks, especially with some of the ad claims they’ve been throwing around.

The Food and Drug Administration has received reports of 13 deaths and a “spontaneous abortion” possibly involving the consumption of 5-Hour ENERGY, according to The New York Times.

5-Hour ENERGY has been making a move into sports, sponsoring longtime PGA Tour star Jim Furyk, winner of the 2003 U.S. Open. But now it’s going to have to conduct some crisis PR.

Via The New York Times:

Federal officials have received reports of 13 deaths over the last four years that cited the possible involvement of 5-Hour Energy, a highly caffeinated energy shot, according to Food and Drug Administration records and an interview with an agency official.

The disclosure of the reports is the second time in recent weeks that F.D.A. filings citing energy drinks and deaths have emerged. Last month, the agency acknowledged it had received five fatality filings mentioning another popular energy drink, Monster Energy.

Since 2009, 5-Hour Energy has been mentioned in some 90 filings with the F.D.A., including more than 30 that involved serious or life-threatening injuries like heart attacks, convulsions and, in one case, a spontaneous abortion, a summary of F.D.A. records reviewed by The New York Times showed.

Elaine Lutz, spokeswoman for Living Essentials, which distributes 5-Hour ENERGY, said the company is “unaware” of any deaths “proven” to have been caused by the product. She pointed out — correctly — in a statement that reports to the FDA don’t constitute proof.

Lutz distinguished the 5-Hour ENERGY shot from more mainstream energy drinks. Younger consumers sometimes mix alcohol with energy drinks during marathon nights on the town:

In direct contrast to other products on the market, 5-hour ENERGY® is not marketed for use with alcohol, nor do we condone its consumption with alcoholic beverages. When consumed according to our recommended use guidelines, 5-hour ENERGY® is an effective dietary supplement, although individual results may vary.

We recommend on product labels and the 5-hour ENERGY® website that individuals consume no more than two bottles of 5-hour ENERGY® shots per day, spaced several hours apart.  We also recommend individuals new to 5-hour ENERGY® try half a bottle to start, wait 10 minutes and consume the rest later.  Consumers who have caffeine sensitivities should consult with a physician before taking, and can consider the “decaf” version.  Consumers are also instructed to use or discard any remaining product within 72 hours (three days) after opening.


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