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Posted June 3, 2019

Vinpocetine May Cause Miscarriage or Fetal Harm

Women who are pregnant or who could become pregnant should not take Vinpocetine because it may cause miscarriage or harm fetal development, the FDA warned in a news release today.

Vinpocetine is a synthetic ingredient found in certain supplements marketed for enhancing memory, focus and cognition, such as Procera AVH and Alpha Brain. It can also be found in some Ginkgo biloba supplements, and products marketed for energy and weight loss. Vinpocetine is produced by chemically altering a compound found in periwinkle (Vinca minor L.) and may be listed on supplement labels as Vinca minor extract, lesser periwinkle extract, or common periwinkle extract. The FDA has determined that vinpocetine is "not an herb or other botanical, nor is it a constituent of any botanical" and tentatively concluded that it should not be classified as a dietary supplement ingredient, although it is currently still sold in a number of supplements.

The FDA issued its warning about vinpocetine after reviewing available safety data, including a recent report by the National Institute of Health's (NIH) National Toxicology Program. Animal studies cited in the report found that exposure to vinpocetine during gestation resulted in reduced fetal weight and developmental toxicity including heart and skeletal malformations, and fetal death. The report noted that the dosage used in some of these studies (repeated doses of 5 mg per kilogram of bodyweight is similar to that following a single 10 mg dose in humans.  

See Related Recalls and Warnings:

Memory Enhancement Ingredient Vinpocetine Should Not Be Sold In Supplements, Says FDA

No Vinpocetine in Some Vinpocetine Supplements; Picamilon Labels Not Accurate

To read the FDA's news release, use the link below.