17.03.2016

Traditional malay medicine cupping

AT LEAST two people have fallen ill after taking four illegal health products sold as traditional Chinese and Malay medicines for pain and aches. Previously used for rheumatoid arthritis and gout, long-term use or overuse of phenylbutazone can lead to kidney damage and even death.
The 2015 Nobel Prize winner Tu Youyou has made a speech on the discovery of artemisinin, a new drug against malaria, at the Karolinska Institute in Sweden.CRI's Luo Bin has the details. They are ATHRI-Eze, Sear-Heang Tienchi Tu Chung Wan, Cap Wijaya Kusuma (An Ki It) and Wiku Jahe Kencur (Akur Mujarab). Steroids can cause diabetes and bone disorders if taken without supervision over a prolonged period of time. The physician, who did not want to be named, said he became suspicious after a patient with arthritis saw effects after taking the product for only a few days.
Such information is provided as reportage and dissemination of information but does not necessarily reflect the opinion of or endorsement by CRI.


Another elderly person, a woman in her 70s, suffered from hormonal disorder Cushing’s syndrome after taking Sear-Heang Tienchi Tu Chung Wan for over a year. More than 100 experts in the program believe that the possibility to curb or eliminate drug resistance is very limited before it spreads to the highly-infected areas.
The Health Sciences Authority (HSA) warned yesterday that people should avoid these products as they contain strong Western ingredients that can lead to detrimental side effects.
But the woman did not suffer any health problems because she stopped taking the product after a few days.
A 70-year-old man was hospitalised after experiencing withdrawal symptoms of dizziness and low blood pressure when he stopped taking the two Malay health products.
Tests by the authority on the two products turned up a total of five undeclared Western ingredients.
The traditional Chinese health product was later found to contain two Western medicinal ingredients – chlorpheniramine and dexamethasone.


They include pain-reliever paracetamol, steroid prednisolone and phenylbutazone, an anti-inflammatory drug banned here since 2006. In general, the indications on the label and the contents don’t match.” Tests found three undeclared Western ingredients in it, including frusemide, a potent drug that flushes out water and salt from the body.
HSA said such traditional medicines are not allowed to contain Western ingredients controlled under the Poisons Act.
They are illegal, and anyone found guilty of selling them may be fined up to $10,000, jailed up to two years, or both.



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