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Health Officials Issue Warning About Energy Drinks As FDA Launches Investigation

(Photo Credit:CBS)

(Photo Credit:CBS)

John Shumway John Shumway
John Shumway joined NewsRadio 1020 KDKA in 2004 as co-host of The KDKA...
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CBS Pittsburgh (con't)

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PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Energy drinks are all the rage, especially on college campuses. However, officials are warning that they could do you physical harm and even lead to death.

As long as there have been college campuses, exams and all-nighters, there has been a need for stimulants. And today, energy drinks are the booster of choice.

But the Food and Drug Administration is now investigating whether you’re getting too much of a burst.

“We have received five adverse event reports and one adverse event report of a heart attack associated with Monster energy drink,” says Shelly Burgess, of the FDA.

Adverse event is code for five deaths over the past year. But the FDA points out none have been directly attributed to the Monster drinks.

Emergency room doctors nationwide are seeing a growing number of energy drink cases.

“They have tachycardic, which means they’re heart is racing too fast; and sometimes not only is their heart racing fast, it’s racing inappropriately fast,” said Dr. John O’Neill, of Allegheny General Hospital Emergency Medicine.

In a healthy person, the impact of these drinks can be handled.

“If you have a heart condition that you may not be aware of, and you rev that engine, and you start that heart going, then bad things can happen,” Dr. O’Neill says.

After a family filed a wrongful death suit in Maryland, the folks at Monster Beverage told Bloomberg News that it is unaware of any fatality caused by its drinks.

No one knows how long the FDA investigation will take or whether any changes or modifications will be made when it’s done. But in the meantime, Dr. O’Neill says the best bet is to use commonsense and moderation.

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