Is this injectable tanning drug safe to use?
Many Australians recognize with the Cancer Council’s mottos reminding us to “slip, slop, slap”, which “there’s absolutely nothing healthy about a tan”.
Now a controversial injectable tanning agent Melanotan is growing in popularity. How safe is it, and can it secure us from the sun’s damage?
What is Melanotan?
Referred to as “Mel”, “MT” or “the Barbie drug”, Melanotan is an artificial melanocortin, which is a hormone derived from the pituitary gland at the base of the brain that regulates development and development.
It assists to accelerate the production of melanin, the pigment that takes in ultraviolet radiation and provides skin its colour. When delivered by injection over the course of just a week, Melanotan has the impact of (semi-permanently) darkening the skin, as though tanned by the sun.
Established in the 1980s by researchers at the University of Arizona, Melanotan is primarily utilized for the treatment of skin disorders including vitiligo and erythropoietic protoporphyria that affect skin look and level of sensitivity (particularly to sunlight). By promoting melanin in the skin, Melanotan can help reduce the symptoms of these conditions and enable those identified to live a more regular life.
Melanotan’s tanning capability and possible use as a “natural” photoprotectant (that helps to avoid damage caused by sunshine) has actually also received much public interest, and led to its appropriation as a lifestyle drug.
The reasoning behind this pattern is that producing tanned skin (by increasing melanin) with minimal to no sun direct exposure could secure people from skin damage, and even potentially lower melanoma danger. More melanin means more security from UV radiation, and therefore a healthier (and conveniently, deeper) skin. In this sense, there is possibly a kernel of truth to the idea of the “healthy radiance”.
Is it safe to use?
Scientific trials of the safety and efficiency of Melanotan are ongoing, however in 2008 the European Medicines Agency authorized a blend of the peptide called Scenesse to be marketed for minimal prescription-only usage by those with particular skin problem throughout the European Union.
However, there are no published medical trials of the drug among individuals without these conditions. This suggests its long-lasting efficacy and security for use in the basic population is unidentified.
In Australia, Melanotan usage is uncontrolled. The drug is currently caught in Set up 4 (prescription just medications) of the Restorative Product Administration’s Poisons Requirement, no products consisting of Melanotan are signed up for use in Australia.
This means while there are rumours of some specialists prescribing the drug, many specialists alert versus– and will not recommend– Melanotan for aesthetic or way of life purposes.
There are currently no population-based studies on Melanotan to show the degree of its usage, nevertheless, there are reports of its increased off-label use in the UK.
Most of users source the drug via “underground” online suppliers at costs ranging from A$ 30-50 for a one-month supply, and self-administer the injections in your home. Users report a series of temporary negative effects consisting of facial flushing, nausea, short-lived freckling and darkening of moles, and in some males, spontaneous erections.
There is a possibility Melanotan may some day present a viable option to accomplishing a “healthy tan” in line with present western charm perfects. It also produces brand-new types of danger worrying needle security, disturbing patient-practitioner relationships by means of uncontrolled use, and the subversion of public health messages that groups such as Cancer Council Australia have worked for decades to promote.
Melanotan in WikiPedia
Melanotan II is a synthetic analogue of the peptide hormone α-melanocyte-stimulating hormone (α-MSH) that stimulates melanogenesis and increases sexual arousal.
It was under development as drug candidate for female sexual dysfunction and erectile dysfunction but clinical development ceased by 2003, and as of 2018, no product containing melanotan II was marketed and all commercial development had ceased.
Unlicensed, untested, or fraudulent products sold as “melanotan II” are found on the Internet, and purported to be effective as “tanning drugs”, though side effects such as uneven pigmentation (it makes already uneven pigmentation more noticeable), new nevi (moles), and darkening or enlargement of existing moles have been reported and have led to medical authorities discouraging its use. There has been no scientific study into the long term and permanent side effects the use of this peptide may cause.
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