'Exhausted' Celebs Deplete Nation's Supply of Vitamin IV Drips

Premature babies across the country are allegedly malnourished because some of the nutrients they need are being sucked up into celebrities freshly botoxed mugs via a trendy vitamin drip.

Famouses like Simon Cowell, Madonna, Cindy Crawford, and the Miami Heat’s Rashard Lewis are allegedly huge fans of these nutrient drips that make you feel and look like a sexy baby vampire. They take them before big events, photo shoots, or just when they just need a little kick. Rhianna even started a craze when she tweeted a photo of her IV line in 2012 — now “party-girl drip” is being used as a hangover cure and there are even vans in Las Vegas that can run as many as 14 IVs at a time.

However, some of the ingredients of this wonder drip are threatened by nationwide shortages that have sent hospitals into a tizzy — they're hoarding, rationing, and bartering the valuable vitamins. According to the Washingtonian, at least 15 people have died and the shortages particularly endanger infants in neonatal intensive-care units (NICUs), whose young bodies have no nutrient reserves.

Specifically:

Last week, the manufacturer of the most-used adult and pediatric IV multivitamin informed health systems that its product—which contains B and C vitamins, among others—is now in shortage. Medical professionals say that, as a result, intravenous B and C vitamins now may be in danger of also going into shortage. In the 1990s, a multivitamin shortage led to a widespread thiamin (vitamin B-1) deficiency that caused several deaths.

Amid this public-health crisis, private clinics around the country are using high doses of intravenous B and C vitamins, and other nutrients that are in shortage, for nonmedical purposes. In some cases, clinics are taking nutrients out of the same limited pool that supplies hospitals and home health-care agencies. In other cases, facilities are injecting clients with nutrients from sources that don’t meet hospital safety standards.

The problem is, hospitals and hangover vans are competing for the some resources — and often the hangover vans have better connections. That, and there's no centralized system to monitor the medical inventories of any establishments, so one place might have 15 and another might have none. Add to the fact that privately run clinics aren't restrained by the same “policies, rules, and regulations" as hospitals, and you've got a real mess on your hands that results in unhealthy situations for everyone involved. (Well, except the residents of the Capitol — they're doing just fine.)

[Washintonian]