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Public urged not to buy or consume slimming product with undeclared and banned Western drug ingredients (with photos)

     The Department of Health (DH) today (February 14) appealed to members of the public not to buy or consume a slimming product called SULAMI capsule as it is suspected to contain undeclared and banned drug ingredients that might be dangerous to health.

     The appeal followed the DH's receipt of a notification from the Hospital Authority regarding a 50-year-old female patient who had a history of consuming the above slimming product. The DH commenced investigation immediately.

     "The patient attended the Accident and Emergency Department of United Christian Hospital on February 1 because of psychotic symptoms including unstable mood, abnormal behaviour and auditory hallucination. She was admitted to the hospital for treatment on the same day and was discharged on February 11. She described a history of consuming the above slimming product, which she had bought locally," a DH spokesman said.

     The DH's investigation is continuing.

     An analytical report from the Government Laboratory on the samples of the product showed that they contained the Part I poisons sibutramine and spironolactone.

     Sibutramine was once used as an appetite suppressant. Since November 2010, products containing sibutramine have been banned in Hong Kong because of increased cardiovascular risk.
     Spironolactone is a prescription drug used in the management of heart failure and should only be used under supervision of a doctor. Side effects include headache, gastrointestinal disturbances, mental confusion, hyponatraemia and hyperkalaemia.

     Members of the public who have purchased the above product should stop using it immediately. They should consult health-care professionals for advice if feeling unwell or in doubt after using it.
     Weight control should be achieved through a balanced diet and appropriate exercise. The public should consult health-care professionals before using any medication for weight control.

     The DH spokesman strongly urged members of the public not to buy products of unknown or doubtful composition, or consume products from unknown sources. People who have purchased the product may submit it to the Drug Office of the DH at Room 1856, Wu Chung House, 213 Queen's Road East, Wan Chai, during office hours for disposal.

Ends/Friday, February 14, 2014
Issued at HKT 19:45


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