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Mainland Chinese medicinal product found to have exceeded Singapore's lead limit

     The Department of Health (DH) today (May 5) draws public attention that a Chinese medicinal product named Zhongya Brand Tzepao Sanpien Pills (ȵP_T@Y) with batch number "551001" has been found by the Singaporean authority to have excessive lead.

     The foreign alert came to light after DH, through its surveillance work, learnt that its Singaporean counterpart announced a recall last evening, as Zhongya Brand Tzepao Sanpien Pills with batch number "551001" and expiry date "10/2012" was found to have lead level which exceeded Singapore's permissible limit for proprietary Chinese medicines.

     The product was manufactured by Yantai Zhongya Pharmaceutical Co Ltd of the Mainland.

     Chronic exposure to lead may lead to anaemia, joint and muscle pain, and even brain and kidney damages.

     From the local list of registered proprietary Chinese medicines, a product with the same name and manufactured by the same Mainland manufacturer, used for treating general weakness and male sexual dysfunction is available here.  

     However, sales record examined by pharmaceutical inspectors so far indicated that the incriminated batch has not been imported by the local wholesaler.

     Moreover, this product was last covered by DH's surveillance programme in 2009 and the lead level was found to be within the local permissible limit.  

     A DH spokesman said that as the Department continues to investigate whether there is any linkage between the recalled product in Singapore and the product registered here, drug samples have been collected from the wholesaler for testing of lead content.   

     "Members of the public must not use the concerned batch of products as they have already been confirmed harmful by the Singaporean authority," the spokesman advised.

     "Those who have been taking the affected products and feel unwell should arrange for healthcare consultation," he added. "And for those who have different batches of the concerned product in hand should best withhold taking, pending the outcome of DH's investigation," the spokesman remarked.

Ends/Wednesday, May 5, 2010
Issued at HKT 22:09


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