The problem of figuring out what X-rated drugs really do

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 11 April, 2009, 12:00am
UPDATED : Saturday, 11 April, 2009, 12:00am

Some newspapers block out four-letter words with Xs. Some drug companies are following suit with advertisements about products that deal with sensitive body parts and their functions.

Lam Kam Sang, a maker of traditional Chinese medicine pills, has several lines of drug products for women that deal with problems with breasts, ovaries and the womb. They have such intriguing English names as Breslin, Ovarin and Wombin. But the company's advert declines to go into details. You wouldn't know exactly what problems those drugs try to address from reading them, other than that they seem to help relieve pain. The key words have been blocked out with Xs. In a footnote, it says it has to abide by 'legal restrictions'. Strange, don't labelling laws require drug makers to tell people what they are selling? Worryingly, the products are available at Watsons and Mannings. Is the company following the law or just exploiting loopholes that bar advertising certain types of drug? I don't know about you, but I don't think I would advise my wife to take X-rated drugs.