This story was about a product that is sold as a means for improving libido. It included content about many of the criteria that are important in a story making health related claims. Although it didn’t give any details about the other options available to treat "sagging libido," it did provide a balanced report about the featured product.
One shortfall is that it failed to mention the potential harms associated with the use of product. This is an important consideration for consumers to factor in when thinking about using any medication or nutraceutical.
Overall, though, this was a well-written and researched story.
The story included the costs for a one-month supply of this product; it did not, however, mention how long an individual would need to consume this product before experiencing benefit.
The story was a little vague in the way it quantified the benefits of treatment, mentioning the proportion of people using the product that experienced "increased satisfaction" or "reporting at least some improvement". It then included comments from an independent source that explained the inadequacy of such measures. It would seem that the story reported the information available and then provided context for a reader to use when interpreting these results.
The story did not contain any mention of harms that might be associated with the use of this product. It did not point out that as a non-regulated product, there is not guarantee about the quality and the quantity of its contents. The story should have mentioned that those with kidney or liver disease might be especially sensitive to changes to electrolyte balance that may occur with this L-arginine. In addition, since L-arginine can affect bleeding, those on anticoagulant or antiplatelet medications should consult with a knowledgeable medical professional.
The story provides some of the evidence available on the effectiveness of this product; it also included comments from an independent expert that served to educate readers about the inadequacy of the studies that have been conducted.
This story did not engage in disease mongering; to its credit, it did not attempt to provide statistics for the proportion of the population estimated to benefit from this type of product.
The story included comments from a company spokesperson (whose conflict of interest was mentioned in the story) as well as an expert in the field who commented about his own published work which was also described in the story. These are not adequate as independent sources of information. However, the story did include comments from a source with expertise germane to the product featured in the story.
The story briefly mentioned other options for treatment of "sagging libido" – supplements, herbs and tonics. It then pointed out the different approach of the ArginMax supplement – "The company website provides links to actual scientific studies published in real medical journals, a rarity in the world of libido remedies." While we didn’t get much detail about the other options, at least they were recognized.
The story was explicit about the availability of these product; it mentioned that it is available over-the-counter and can be purchased on-line or at a brick-and-mortar chain that it named.
It’s clear from the story that this is not a new product.
Does not appear to rely on press release.