Chinese firm recalls deadly herbal medicine

October 18th, 2008 - 5:01 pm ICT by IANS  

Beijing, Oct 18 (Xinhua) The Chinese manufactures of a herbal injectable recalled the entire product from the market after three patients died, the national drug safety watchdog said Saturday.The health ministry and the State Food and Drug Administration (SFDA) said in a statement the Wandashan Pharmaceutical Company, in Heilongjiang province in northwest China, made the move “voluntarily” according to the country’s drug recall regulations.

The recall came following an instruction by the SFDA to suspend sale and use of the injection.

Six patients experienced adverse reactions after being receiving a ciwujia injection. Their symptoms included vomiting and becoming comatose. Three patients died, according to a report released Oct 6. The other three are under observation.

The medicine is extracted from ciwujia plant, a type of Siberian ginseng, and is used to treat thrombosis. It is also believed to be helpful in treating coronary heart disease, nervous exhaustion and menopausal problems.

Testing on ciwujia samples showed the product was tainted with bacteria, SFDA said and added authorities were investigating how the contamination happened.

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