Last September, the family of David McElwee claims he bought a male sexual stimulant that ultimately led to his death. He purchased the product at Erotic City in Kansas City. A day after he took the product, McElwee suffered such low blood pressure that he lost consciousness and went into cardiac arrest. He didn't survive.
The mother of his two children, Trisha Hale, is now suing the parent company of Erotic City, Enlightened Reading Inc, as well as manufacturers Novacare and Impulsaria. The suit claims the label of the product, Stiff Nights, didn't show that it contained "a controlled ingredient, Sildenafil citrate and/or Sulfoaildenafil."
The FDA lists Sildenafil as the active ingredient in Viagra. The lawsuit also claims the companies were negligent and failed to warn consumers of possible dangerous side effects of those ingredients including death because there was no mention of the ingredient or a warning about its side effects on the label. In fact, the lawsuit claims the manufacturers led the public to believe "Stiff Nights" was a "dietary supplement" that was "100 percent natural" and "100 percent safe."
Enlightened Reading did file a response admitting they sold the product but denied the allegations.
In 2010, Novacare voluntarily recalled a list of products including Stiff Nights after the FDA told company officials the product labels didn't reflect the products contained Sulfoaildenafil and that "undeclared ingredient" can interact with other medications to lower blood pressure to dangerous levels. At the time, the recall was precautionary and wasn't associated with any illnesses.