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Consumer Safety: NAFDAC alerts Nigerians to substandard, contaminated Paracetamol syrups

*The National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control discloses the affected oral suspension contains diethylene glycol and ethylene glycol that are toxic to humans, and warns importers, distributors, retailers and consumers to exercise caution and vigilance within the supply chain to avoid the substandard (contaminated) syrups

Isola Moses | ConsumerConnect

In continuation of its consumer education and sensitisation mandate to safeguard the health of consumers, the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) has issued a public alert against the intake of substandard Paracetamol oral suspension from Liberia.

ConsumerConnect reports the health regulatory agency

disclosed this development in a statement issued Thursday, June 15, 2023, via its verified Twitter account via (@NafdacAgency) June 15, 2023 at https://twitter.com/NafdacAgency/status… titled: “Public Alert No. 017/2023.

Alert on substandard Paracetamol Suspension received from Republic of Liberia”.

NAFDAC in the official statement warned Nigerian consumers against purchasing the drug before even thinking about taking it.

The regulator stated: “The National Agency for Food and Drugs Administration and Control (NAFDAC) is notifying the public of a substandard paracetamol suspension PARA CLEAR SUSPENSION 125 received from Liberian Medicine and Health Product Regulatory Authority for laboratory testing in the NAFDAC Central Drug Control Laboratory (CDCL).

“Laboratory analysis of the sample confirms that the product contains toxic ethylene glycol, a toxic substance that is not expected in product formulations.

“The product also failed the requirement for acute oral toxicity with five deaths of the laboratory animals recorded.”

The statement also noted that diethylene glycol and ethylene glycol are toxic to humans when consumed and can prove fatal.

The regulatory agency further explained that the toxic effects can include abdominal pain, vomiting, diarrhoea, inability to pass urine, headache, altered mental state and acute kidney injury which may lead to death.

Paracetamol Suspension is used for the treatment of mild to moderate aches and pain, including headache, migraine, neuralgia, toothache, sore throat, menstrual pains etc, it said.

The drug is also used for the reduction of fever and to be used as an adjunctive treatment to relieve symptoms of cold and flu.

It is also noted though the product is not in NAFDAC database, importers, distributors, retailers and consumers are advised to exercise caution and vigilance within the supply chain to avoid the importation, distribution, sale and use of substandard (contaminated) syrups.

NAFDAC as well said that all medical products must be obtained from authorised/licensed suppliers.

The products’ authenticity and physical condition should be carefully checked, it said.

The agency implored members of the public to desist from purchasing medicinal products from unauthorised sources such as roadside vendors and street hawkers as fake drugs are mostly smuggled into the country from neighbouring countries and distributed through such inappropriate channels.

The statement noted: “Anyone in possession of the above-mentioned product is advised to discontinue sale or use and submit stock to the nearest NAFDAC office.

“If you, or someone you know, have used this product, or suffered any adverse reaction/event after use, you are advised to seek immediate medical advice from a qualified healthcare professional.”

Likewise, healthcare professionals and consumers are advised to report any suspicion of the sale and use of substandard and falsified medicines to the nearest NAFDAC office.

Healthcare professionals and patients are also encouraged to report adverse events or side effects related to the use of the medicinal product to the nearest NAFDAC office.

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