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Lesotho Bans Use of Contaminated Benylin Syrup

….Calls for the nation not to panic

17 April 2024 by Limpho Sello

 Est Read Time: 1 min(s) 29 sec(s)

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The Ministry of Health in Lesotho has issued an instruction to the public to stop using Benylin flu medication from two specific batch numbers: 329304 and 329303.

Dr. Nyane Letsie, the Director General of Health Services at the Ministry, has directed all local health facilities to halt the sale of Benylin from these batch numbers immediately.

“Facilities should remove them from their inventory and return them to the primary importer with immediate effect,” read an April 15, 2024, alert.

“If any adverse reaction or event after the use of this product are witnessed in any children, direct such patients for immediate medical attention from a qualified healthcare professional,” Dr Letsie said.

Neo Khoarai, the pharmacist from the Ministry of Health, confirmed the authenticity of the alert and urged the nation to remain calm, emphasizing that only two batches are affected.

The Ministry of Health has issued an alert for the immediate discontinuation of two specific batches of Benylin, following the recall by the South African Health Products Regulatory Authority (Sahpra) of two batches of Benylin paediatric cough syrup due to high levels of toxic diethylene glycol.

On April 16, the Citizen reported that the Nigerian National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control detected high levels of diethylene glycol in a batch of Benylin paediatric cough syrup a week ago.

“Toxic effects can include abdominal pain, vomiting, diarrhoea, inability to pass urine, headache, altered mental state and acute kidney injury that may lead to death,” says Sahpra CEO Dr Boitumelo Semete-Makokotlela.

Meanwhile, Dr. Letsie stated that diethylene glycol is toxic to humans if consumed and can be fatal.”

“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,” read the alert by Dr Letsie.

She advised consumers or patients who suspect substandard or falsified medicines to report to the nearest health facility. Healthcare professionals are then expected to relay these reports to the National Pharmacovigilance Centre.

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