Gluconic acid is found naturally, and is industrially made by the fermentation of glucose, typically by Aspergillus niger, but also by other fungi, e.g. In September 2003, Zicam faced lawsuits from users who claimed that the product, a nasal gel containing zinc gluconate and several inactive ingredients, negatively affected their sense of smell and sometimes taste.Some plaintiffs alleged experiencing a strong and very painful burning sensation when they used the product.The makers of Zicam sell it to the public in many different forms.Some examples of the different types of Zicam that are available to consumers include: The active ingredient in Zicam is zinc, which is believed by many to provide those who use it with the benefit of minimizing the symptoms of a common cold. It is an ionic compound consisting of two anions of gluconate for each zinc(II) cation.Zinc gluconate is a popular form for the delivery of zinc as a dietary supplement, or the name zincum gluconicum is used when the product is described as homeopathic. Instances of anosmia (loss of smell) have been reported with intranasal use of some products containing zinc gluconate.
Therefore, no formal studies or statistics were offered to the FDA for approval prior to Zicam hitting the market.
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While not being able to smell is not by itself a dangerous condition, it can lead to dangers for those who lack this sense.
For example, those who cannot smell will not be able to detect spoiled foods or the smell of smoke.
Anosmia is the loss of the sense of smell, and many believe that this condition is the result of the ingestion of a high amount of zinc.