Extensive federal research puts forth dietary supplements risks with finding that 23,000 emergency room visits per year are the side effect of dietary supplements use.
The extensive federal research has been carried out by a joint team of medical researchers from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Conducted on medical records spanning a 10-year timeframe, the study reveals that the majority of emergency room visits due to dietary supplements use occur among the young.
At the same time, the extensive federal research puts forth dietary supplements risks associated with a largely unregulated industry and use. Misusing these supplements, particularly those that promise energy enhancement and weight loss or muscle building is a serious health problem among younger adults and teenagers alike.
Unaware of the risks as no physician visit is required before, nor a prescription to buy dietary supplements, many are also unaware of the risks dietary supplements carry. The industry is doing well, with a reported 32 billion dollars annually. However, for people who are at risk of medical complications or have already been diagnosed with heart problems or others, the largely unregulated industry is doing more harm than good.
In the wake of the study, industry representative argue that what the study shows in fact is that dietary supplements are safer than prescription drugs. With over 150 million U.S. citizens estimated to use dietary supplements, the percentage of those visiting the emergency room is quite reduced.
The results of the extensive federal research have been published in The New England Journal of Medicine. The effects of dietary supplement use or misuse in this case included a long list of ailments.
Among them, heart issues, vomiting, nausea, severe allergic reactions topped the list. These effects stem from using dietary supplements such as minerals and vitamins, amino acids or what is advertised as herbal pills. Of the patients who reached the emergency room each year, 10 percent required prolonged hospitalization.
Moreover, the age group of those who ended up in the emergency room for dietary supplements use was between 20 and 34. The overall number of emergency room records for dietary supplements side effects is only approximately 5 percent of those due to prescription drugs. Nonetheless, the latter occurs with older adults.
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