High School Bans Energy Drink After Students Say They Felt Ill

Friday, February 23rd 2007, 4:10 pm

By: News On 6

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (AP) _ A high school banned a caffeine-packed energy drink after students complained that it made them sick and shaky and caused their hearts to race.

Some convenience stores near Doherty High also stopped selling the Spike Shooter drink, district spokeswoman Elaine Naleski said Friday.

About a half-dozen students reported symptoms including shortness of breath, heart palpitations and nausea, school officials said.

One student was taken by ambulance to a hospital last week and another was ``so shaky and messed up'' that she was brought to the school office in a wheelchair, Principal Jill Martin said. The effects were temporary and the students recovered, Naleski said.

Tim Patterson, chief executive of Colorado Springs-based Biotest Laboratories, which produces Spike Shooter, said the drink isn't meant for anyone under 18.

``I don't want these kids consuming the product,'' Patterson said. ``That's not my target market.''

He said thousands of customers have had no problem with the product, which the company says is sold in Colorado and Northern California.

The drink Web site says an 8.4-ounce can has 300 milligrams of caffeine. By comparison, the average 5-ounce cup of coffee has 80 to 115 milligrams of caffeine, according to the London-based International Coffee Organization.

The Web site cautions consumers: ``Begin use with one-half can to determine tolerance.''

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