Health Canada said possible side effects include low blood pressure and those with heart problems may find increased risk of cardiovascular side-effects such as heart attack, stroke, chest pain, high blood pressure and abnormal heart beat.
One warning for 12 products followed a similar statement issued by the Japanese Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfar recently, with both agencies noting the manufacturer/s of the products were unknown.
“Sildenafil is a prescription drug used to treat erectile dysfunction and should only be taken under the supervision of a health care practitioner,” Health Canada wrote in its consumer alert.
The products are Golden aryuru; Baisheng wei ge; Zhonghua niubian; Ten ka dai 1 bou; Kuai gan bei zeng chao yue zi wo (Happy felling doubly increase); Ling tou lang; SkyFruit; Chu bi ho ken; Jinbolang; Suika Koso; Lov; and I ka ou (2009 nen sin hoso) and/or I ka ou (saisinsui shutsu hoso).
The other warning involved a product called Vialipro, a product which the US Food and Drug Administration has already raised a red flag about, and which Health Canada noted is not authorized for sale in Canada. Vialipro was found to contain sulfoaildenafil, a substance similar to sildenafil.
The product was manufactured by Good Health, Inc – a Texan company, that had instigated a voluntary recall.
Potential side effects were similar for Vialipro and included headache, facial flushing, indigestion, dizziness, abnormal vision, and hearing loss.
Health Canada also warned consumers off Joyful Slim Herb Supplement due to the presence of the undeclared ingredient, desmethyl sibutramine, which is similar to sibutramine.
That supplement also attracted an FDA warning and had been voluntarily withdrawn by New York company, J & H Besta Corporation.
Side-effects associated with sibutramine include increased blood pressure and heart rate, dry mouth, difficulty sleeping and constipation.