Over the past four years, 13 death reports filed with the FDA have mentioned 5-Hour Energy as a possible factor, reports the New York Times in a review of FDA records. The caffeine shot has appeared in 90 FDA filings during the period, more than 30 of which were tied to serious conditions ranging from heart attacks to a spontaneous abortion. The energy shot's producer, Living Essentials, filed the 13 FDA reports citing deaths, in accordance with federal rules. But the firm says it's "unaware of any deaths proven to be caused by the consumption of 5-Hour Energy."
The news follows a report last month on five deaths possibly linked to Monster Energy drink. According to Consumer Reports, 5-Hour Energy contains about 215 mg of caffeine, compared to between 100 and 150 mg in a cup of coffee. It also contains large amounts of vitamin B varieties and taurine. The 13 reports citing fatalities compare to 17 fatality reports in 2010 for all dietary and weight loss supplements—some 50,000 products in total. Still, it's likely that many supplement makers don't report such incidents as required, an FDA rep tells the Times. (Read more 5-Hour Energy stories.)