Inside Osama's Medicine Chest

Inside Osama's Medicine Chest

By Lindsay Stein 05/10/11

Drugs for blood pressure, ulcers, shingles...and a stash of natural Viagra.

Image: 
Sewing his "wild oats" right up to the end. TNR via tumblr

Last week’s raid of Osama bin Laden’s compound in Pakistan turned up more than hard drives chockful of jihadi schemes. The U.S. Navy Seal commandos also checked out his medicine cabinet and found—surprise!—about a dozen prescriptions common to any man in his 50s…right down to the “natural Viagra” called Avena Sativa syrup, an extract of wild oats that may have given the terrorist mastermind a boost in the bedroom he shared with his much younger third wife—one of three whom he lived with at the compound. 

The Al Qaeda leader’s pill box also contained drugs for high blood pressure, nerve pain, ulcers, and shingles, MSNBC reported. Notably absent were any medications for the chronic kidney disease from which bin Laden was long reported to be suffering. According to The New York Times, Amal told officials that the 53-year-old bin terror leader had fully recovered from two kidney operations just before 9/11. She said that he no longer required dialysis and that he “self-medicated” by eating a lot of watermelon. But despite the large chestful of prescription pills and his fondness for occasional dye-jobs,  Amal Ahmed Abdulfattah, told Pakistani investigators that her husband was fit as a fiddle. “He was neither weak nor frail,” the 29-year-old Yemeni native insisted. “He believed in his own medication.”

Whether or not the high-strength marijuana plants flourishing around the compound that we previously blogged were included in his self-medication remains a mystery. But by all accounts, bin Laden’s life was one of virtual self-imprisonment. He never ventured outside the mansion and spent almost his entire time in the bedroom.

With little to do but plot world domination and videotape himself making “statements” the FBI’s Most Wanted Man may have found the long hours hard to fill. The Avena Sativa likely came in handy: in addition to being an aphrodisiac, the syrup serves as a remedy for sour stomachs.