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Recommendations on the use on injecting tanning agents, e.g. Melanotan


Because of the current attention and also cautions concerning the dangers of injecting melanotan the HSE has actually released info as well as suggestions on the usage on infusing tanning representatives, e.g. Melanotan.

What is Melanotan?

Melanotan is based on a medicine (afamelanotide) which was created by the College of Arizona in 1981 to be used for image protection versus sunlight damages. This medicine is currently going through clinical tests for use in patients with specific sun-sensitive skin problem as well as is not offered for general sale.

The medication is chemically connected to the alpha-melanocyte stimulating hormonal agent (α-MSH) as well as binds to receptors (melanocortin receptors) in human skin cells. This binding to the α-MSH receptor, which has an essential duty in establishing skin as well as hair pigmentation, boosts production of melanin in the skin, causing a ‘sunlight tan’.

Melanotan is a synthetic analog of α-MSH and is prohibited, untested and also uncontrolled which is currently being marketed online for self-administration. α-MSH is really fragile as well as calls for an extensive manufacturing atmosphere which can not be assured in unlicensed manufacturing research laboratories. The item should likewise be saved in a fridge.

What is the difference between Melanotan I and Melanotan II?

Melanotan I particularly binds to receptors in charge of tanning therefore has less negative effects. Nevertheless far more of it is required for effect and also consequently it is much more pricey than Melanotan II.

Melanotan II binds to receptors apart from those in charge of tanning and for that reason causes even more side-effects.

What are the side-effects?

As this is an uncontrolled and also untested medication the full series of potential side-effects are unknown. Raised sex drive, spontaneous erections, queasiness (with succeeding weight-loss), facial flushing on management, flu-like signs and symptoms, and increased blood pressure have actually been reported.

How is Melanotan administered?

Melanotan is provided subcutaneously by infusing into the fatty layer of tissue around the stomach button area. Clients inject daily until a preferred colour is attained and after that remain to infuse once or twice a week to maintain the colour.

Some darkening of the skin might take place utilizing the shot alone but the results are far more remarkable when used in addition to exposure to UV light (sun or tanning bed) 2-3 times a week originally and after that 1-2 times a week afterwards.

How is Melanotan readily available?

Products on the marketplace include:

  • A multi- dosage vial of 10, 20 or 30 doses for subcutaneous injection.
  • A collection of pre-filled syringes for subcutaneous injection.
  • A nasal spray.

Key issues

Item purity and also content:

  • This is an unlicensed, unregulated product. This is a breakable drug which calls for refrigeration.
  • Users might hesitant to position the item in their family members fridge. If pre-filled syringes are placed in the fridge this has ramifications in terms of access of youngsters to syringes.

Unknown side-effects:

  • There are no medical trials readily available on the short as well as long-term impacts of using these products or if the dosages advised by suppliers are secure.
  • There is no test data readily available on how these products may interact with various other drugs or their effect on an unborn youngster.

Injecting equipment

  • Needles made use of to infuse can likewise lug physical liquids, which can pass on infections such as HIV as well as liver disease. In many cases, there is an undersupply of needles by the online suppliers for the quantity of administration needed, e.g. 1 needle provided with a 10 dosage vial.
  • This could cause sharing as well as recycling of needles. There are reports of customers utilizing the exact same needle for a month and trying to sterilise after every usage.
  • A multi-dose vial produced in a non-rigorous manufacturing atmosphere may not continue to be sterilized throughout of its usage e.g. a 30mg vial is created to be made use of for 30 dosages which might span an amount of time of 10 weeks.
  • Some sites use pre-filled syringes in which the item is currently re-constituted with bacteriostatic water, nevertheless there is no guarantee that these pre-filled items will continue to be stable and also sterile throughout distribution or for the lifetime of their usage.

Disposal of used sharps

There have actually been records of needles being thrown away in home rubbish.

Enhanced direct exposure to UV rays

As the impacts of the tanning agents are a lot more remarkable when made use of combined with direct exposure to UV light (by natural sunshine or by tanning beds) use of the agents may boost UV direct exposure with all the addition risks connected such as raised threat of skin cancer cells, skin ageing, and so on

Harm reduction activities

  • Describe to individuals about the threats associated with injectable tanning products.
  • Highlight the risks connected with raised UV direct exposure (the sick impacts of tanning still happen even in customers who have a deep tan). Customers can get in touch with the Irish Cancer Society if they have issues pertaining to skin cancer on the cancer helpline 1800 200 700 or
  • Encourage users to quit making use of, and also to seek medical suggestions if required.

If making use of

Tidy injecting tools:

  • Advise that they utilize a clean needle every single time and also deal with needles in a sharps container. The needles available in the injecting pack offered in drug stores participating in the Pharmacy Needle Exchange Program are developed like a diabetic person needle as well as appropriate for subcutaneous shot.
  • Encourage clients on the danger of blood birthed conditions as well as supply recommendations on whom to call if the customer is worried that they might have exposed themselves to a blood birthed condition by sharing needles.
  • A listing of pharmacies participating in your location is readily available via the Medicines helpline 1800 459 459.

Safe disposal.

The pack also has a little sharps container for made use of sharps. Drug stores will certainly approve made use of sharps if returned in the sharps container.

Impurity as well as instability of item.

  • The amount of item in the vial might differ significantly, might be contaminated with microorganisms or other chemicals.
  • Check the vial before use and also do not utilize if blemished or if bits visible.
  • It should be stored in the fridge.
  • All medicines need to be stayed out of the reach of kids which might be hard in a fridge.


  • Advise that side-effects are unidentified, and also the doses being used might not be safe.
  • Effects of the medicine on an unborn kid are unknown.
  • Effects when taken with other drugs are unidentified.


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. Products:

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