Dietary supplement Hydroxycut was recalled following reports of severe liver damage and at least one death, and the government warned dieters and body builders to stop using the weight loss pill.
Hydroxycut, sold in 14 different varieties (see below), is very popular, accounting for about 90 percent of the market for weight loss supplements and sold a reported nine million packages last year through pharmacies and grocery stores.
News of the recall was announced May 1, 2009 by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, which said it had received 23 reports of liver problems, including one death. One patient received a liver transplant while another was on a waiting list for a new liver.
If you or someone you know suffered serious injury or death as the result of using Hydroxycut, you may want to contact a Hydroxycut attorney.
Symptoms ranged from jaundice to liver failure. The FDA said other health problems were reported including seizures, cardiovascular disorders and rhabdomyolysis, a form of muscle damage that can cause kidney failure.
The one reported death was that of a 19-year-old boy from the Southwest. He died in 2007 but the FDA did not receive the report until March 2009.
Symptoms of liver damage include jaundice, a yellowing of the skin or eyes, brown urine, nausea, vomiting, excessive fatigue, weakness, stomach pain, itching and loss of appetite.
Supplements such as Hydroxycut, which is advertised as being made from natural ingredients, are not as tightly regulated by the government as medications and do not require FDA approval before they are marketed. Hydroxycut is made by the Canadian company Iovate Health Sciences Inc. and sold under the Iovate and Muscle tech brand names.
An FDA official said it took some time for the government to figure out the Hydroxycut problem because cases of liver damage were rare and the agency does not have authority to review supplements before they hit the market. Also, the FDA relies on reports of health problems and many if not most are never reported.
Health officials aren’t certain exactly what ingredient in Hydroxycut may be toxic, but in April 2009 a medical journal said one ingredient, hydroxycitric acid, which is derived from a tropical fruit, could potentially cause liver damage.
Kline & Specter, PC, with more than 35 experienced attorneys (several of whom are also highly regarded doctors), is one of the nation's leading law firms with the ability to litigate Hydroxycut lawsuits. Contact a Hydroxycut lawyer today.
The recalled products were the following:
- Hydroxycut Regular Rapid Release Caplets
- Hydroxycut Caffeine-Free Rapid Release Caplets
- Hydroxycut Hardcore Liquid Caplets
- Hydroxycut Max Liquid Caplets
- Hydroxycut Regular Drink Packets
- Hydroxycut Caffeine-Free Drink Packets
- Hydroxycut Hardcore Drink Packets (Ignition Stix)
- Hydroxycut Max Drink Packets
- Hydroxycut Liquid Shots
- Hydroxycut Hardcore RTDs (Ready-to-Drink)
- Hydroxycut Max Aqua Shed
- Hydroxycut 24
- Hydroxycut Carb Control
- Hydroxycut Natural