The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is investigating a string of deaths ostensibly linked to 5-Hour Energy, a popular energy drink sold in 1.9 ounce containers commonly referred to as “shots.”According to a number of news sources, FDA records show that 90 incident reports have been filed with the agency, with more than 30 being for serious illnesses or reactions to the drink. People affected by 5-Hour Energy have experienced heart attacks and convulsions. One report cited the case of a spontaneous abortion.
The 5-Hour Energy investigation comes on the heels of a recent inquiry into Monster Energy drinks. The FDA reports that it has traced five deaths and one heart attack to Monster since 2004. In late October, the parents of a 14 year-old girl brought a wrongful death suit against the drink maker after she drank two 24-ounce cans within a 24 hour period. An autopsy revealed that the girl died of cardiac arrhythmia due to caffeine toxicity. The girl’s parents believe that Monster failed to put adequate warnings on drink containers explaining the dangers of consuming too much of the beverage within a 24-hour period.
With the growing popularity of energy drinks, health officials have become increasingly concerned. According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, hospital visits due to energy drink consumption has increased dramatically between 2005 and 2009. Just over half of the visits were by people aged 18 through 25, and had used such drinks with alcohol and other drugs.
While the makers of 5-Hour Energy insist that their products are safe, it would not be surprising to see a class action lodged against them if people continue to be harmed.
Source: CBSNews.com, FDA investigating 13 deaths tied to 5-Hour-Energy, November 15, 2012