Identification and Analysis of Adulterants in Aphrodisiac Herbal Medicines Sold by Private Herbal Clinics, Pharmacies and Herbal Drug Shops in Kampala, Uganda

  • Keneth Dumba
  • Wilberforce Kwiringira
  • Jane Namukobe
  • Muhammad Ntale
Keywords: Aphrodisiac herbal medicines, herbal sexual enhancers, sildenafil citrate, tadalafil, vardenafil hydrochloride, erectile dysfunction


High performance thin layer chromatography (HPTLC), high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC), column chromatography and Fourier transform infrared spectrophotometer (FTIR) were used for the identification and analysis of three phosphodiesterase type-5 (PDE-5) inhibitors in 50 randomly selected aphrodisiac herbal samples. Twenty-seven samples were found to contain one or two or all three synthetic PDE-5 inhibitors representing 54% of the analyzed samples. The FTIR spectral characteristics obtained from the isolated compounds were found to be in conformity with those of sildenafil, tadalafil and vardenafil reference standards. Patients who use these herbal sexual enhancers with the notion that they are safe and natural are likely to be exposed to serious health risks related to safety and quality of the herbal products. There is need for additional effort to effectively regulate herbal medicines in order to protect the consumers from the threat of adulteration.


Journal Identifiers

eISSN: 1026-552X