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  Chelsy Jane A. Cambell BSN2A Dietary Supplement Ingredient Linked to Miscarriages A widely available dietary supplement ingredient may cause miscarriages or problems with fetal   development if used during pregnancy, according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).   On Monday (June 3), the agency warned pregnant women and those of childbearing age to avoid using supplements containing vinpocetine. Supplements with this ingredient are often marketed for enhanced   memory or focus, increased energy or weight loss, the FDA said.   In animal studies, scientists found that vinpocetine caused decreased fetal weight and increased risk of miscarriage in pregnant animals. What's more, the levels of vinpocetine measured in the animals' blood were similar to those seen in people after taking a single dose of vinpocetine. These findings are particularly concerning since products containing vinpocetine are widely available for use by women of childbearing age, the FDA said in a statement.  That's why today we're advising pregnant women and women who could become pregnant not to take vinpocetine ”  On product labels, vinpocetine is sometimes referred to as Vinca minor   extract, lesser periwinkle extract or common periwinkle extract. But rather than being a natural extract, vinpocetine is a synthetic compound. In some countries, vinpocetine is considered a prescription drug that's used for conditions affecting the brain and blood flow; but in the U.S., vinpocetine isn't approved to treat any conditions. Dietary supplements containing vinpocetine haven't been reviewed for their safety or effectiveness, the FDA said. In a 2015 study published in the journal Drug Testing and Analysis, researchers found that doses   of vinpocetine varied widely in dietary supplements sold in the United States, from about 0.3 milligrams to 32 mg of vinpocetine. The recommended dose when the drug is prescribed is between 5 and 40 mg, according to the 2015 study. In 2016, the FDA tentatively concluded that vinpocetine doesn't fit the definition of a dietary ingredient and thus can't be marketed as —  or be an ingredient in —  dietary supplements. However, the agency   requested comments on the issue and has not reached a definitive conclusion on whether vinpocetine is  legal for sale as a dietary supplement. The agency now says it plans to expedite the completion of these proceedings that began in 2016. Still, vinpocetine is found in hundreds of brands of supplements sold in the U.S., said Dr. Pieter Cohen, a general internist at Cambridge Health Alliance in Somerville, Massachusetts, and senior author of the 2015 study. The FDA is also advising companies that market supplements containing vinpocetine to make sure that their product labels provide warnings against the use of their products by pregnant women and women who could become pregnant.  Chelsy Jane A. Cambell BSN2A REACTION PAPER Basically, the article was about how a dietary supplement ingredient can cause drastic effects to pregnant woman which can lead to miscarriage. This ingredient can be found everywhere and can be included in any thing. In my opinion, we should always be aware of the supplements or medications that we are taking considering that it enters our body. The pregnant women should always read present articles to be updated of what is happening around them. They should also be careful and be keen enough when it comes to reading the contents of what they are ingesting to avoid causing harm to their child. The child can avoid having teratogenic effects and the mother would lessen the chance of having a miscarriage. It is always advisable to see or consult a doctor before taking a medication to ensure the safety of the mother and the child as well. I commend the FDA for taking action and advising the companies that market supplements containing vinpocetine to atleast include product labels and warning signs to spread awareness to the people taking it. Overall, I believe that we should be vigilant and be more aware of our surroundings and we must read the labels before taking something in order for us to prevent accidents in the future. For now, the best thing that we can do is to avoid this drug since it is still under some close observation.
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