Why counterfeit sex drugs are in high demand in China

Apr 2, 2018


Why counterfeit sex drugs are in high demand in China

The cases of the illegal manufacture of fake sex drugs seem to be a norm in China. Chinese courts have handled up to 1,000 cases within the past ten years and the trade seems to be more rampant by the day. It is more rampant in Zhejiang and Guangdong provinces and these drugs are being sold to the United States, Middle East, and African countries.

The major reason the trade may never stop is the tremendous profit it returns. The high demand for sex drugs has made it a lucrative business. On the average, it costs as low as 1.7 yuan to manufacture a box of fake sex drugs which can be sold for hundreds of yuan. So, the trade may never stop.

The problem with these drugs is not only their ineffectiveness but their side effects. It is worrisome that these drugs have been linked to liver failure, stroke, and even death on rare cases. In addition, rupturing of blood vessels and swelling in the groin are also some of its side effects.

As mentioned earlier, what makes this dubious business thrive is the demand for aphrodisiacs and this is because the number of Chinese men with erectile dysfunction has increased drastically in the past few years. In fact, erectile dysfunction has become a very common health issue in China as more than 60 percent of Chinese men between ages of 40 and 70 are currently suffering from erectile dysfunction. It is also important to note that the figure may even be higher than that as there are other men who refuse to accept that they are suffering from the condition because of the stigma attached to it.

Unfortunately, any of the men suffering from erectile dysfunction balk at the idea of seeing a physician on it. This is why only 35 percent of the patients of the medical condition get to see a doctor about it. 47 percent of them treat it as a minor problem that will fizzle out on its own. Some of them prefer to buy some over-the-counter sex drugs and this is how they create a thriving market for counterfeits.

In the bid to stop this illicit trade, health authorities notified consumers of the prevalence of fake sex pills and also called for stringent penalties for any company caught adding sildenafil to their dietary supplements.

While some counterfeiters label their products with popular brand names like Cialis and Viagra, others market them as dietary supplements. They often include sildenafil which is the active ingredients in Viagra in the supplements even though such dietary supplements have been banned in China.

You require approval from health authorities to produce any drug that contains sildenafil citrate and more than 20 pharmaceutical companies have already applied but only a few of them have actually gotten the required approval.

A counterfeiting syndicate was busted in January 2018 and it was discovered that this gang had already sold about 1 million yuan worth of the drug in just two months. Even though they claim that these drugs only contained traditional Chinese herbs, investigations showed that they all contained a tangible amount of sildenafil citrate, a banned substance in China.

Most of these drugs are manufactured in clandestine and shady environment in uncontrolled conditions. Perpetrators often mix corn starch with sildenafil powder. These counterfeiters usually spare no expense in terms of packaging and advertisements.

Another danger in these fake drugs is that some of them usually contain dosage of sildenafil that is higher than the recommended dosage. In fact, some of the fake drugs contain nearly 100 times more than the recommended dosage of sildenafil. This is why they often lead to serious medical conditions.

These counterfeiters are only interested in making sales so they often lie that everyone can take their drugs no matter their medical condition and the kind of medication they are taking. Nothing could be further from the truth than that. For instance people that are on blood pressure-regulating drugs should stay away from sildenafil as it can lead to low blood pressure levels.

Even if counterfeits have the required dosage of sildenafil, they often lack the other components that are meant to suppress side effects. This is why the same counterfeit sometimes have different effects on the same set of people when taken on different occasions. It was later discovered that some particular sildenafil citrate pills that were imported into China to be administered to animals were repackaged for use on humans.

These counterfeits are now being sold online and this makes it accessible to buyers worldwide. Over the years, several fake sex pill gangs have been exposed and most of them are worth millions of yuan. In fact, a big order that was being shipped to Egypt was busted in July, 2014.

The emergence of internet has made it even easier for counterfeiters to order sildenafil citrate and other raw materials to make the pills themselves. In fact, sildenafil citrate is now being advertised all over the internet. A simple Google search will return several online retailers. It is sold at an average of 450 to 500 yuan per kilogram. Anyone can purchase the product as long as he can provide a business license.