This can be life-threatening for children

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More than 300 children die after consuming contaminated cough medicine. (iconic image) © Wassilis Aswestopoulos/Imago

Contaminated cough syrups are circulating in many countries. These have already led to child deaths. WHO warns.

Update from Tuesday, January 24, 1:50 PM: The World Health Organization (WHO) has called for all countries to carry out robust testing after seven countries discovered deadly cough syrups for children. The WHO warned in Geneva on Monday (January 23) that counterfeit drugs or those that do not meet safety standards should be detected and withdrawn from circulation. A WHO spokesman said in Geneva on Tuesday that it was not clear whether it was fake drugs or accidental contamination during the production of the juices.

At least 300 young children have died in three countries in the past few months after ingesting over-the-counter cough syrups. They contained toxic substances such as industrial solvents or antifreeze, which were dangerous even in small amounts. The WHO did not initially say which countries were involved. The organization had already issued warnings about incidents in Gambia, Indonesia and Uzbekistan.

18 children die after taking cough medicine in Uzbekistan

Report from Friday 30th December: Uzbekistan – At least 18 children have died suddenly after drinking cough syrup in Uzbekistan. Ministry of Local Health a Press releaseAccording to the first report, an on-site inspection including a search was conducted in the city of Samarkand. Cough medicine samples were taken. The ministry is in contact with Uzbek authorities regarding Dok1 Max syrup from pharmaceutical company Marion Biotech.

A local pharmaceutical company also inspected the manufacturing facility in the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh and took samples of the cough syrup and sent them to a laboratory for analysis. The Uzbek state prosecutor’s office has opened a case over the distribution of adulterated drugs, Fergana news agency reported on Thursday (December 29).

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A spokesman for Uzbekistan’s secret service had previously said the suspects were in detention. Investigations are underway against those responsible at Quramax Medical, which imported the cough syrup, and at GmbH “Scientific Center for Standardization of Medicines” in Uzbekistan. The spokesman did not provide any information on the number of arrests, AFP news agency reported.

Cough syrup apparently contaminated: At least 18 children die

Marian Biotech was not available Thursday for inquiries from the German Press Agency. An employee of the company told Indian news agency ANI that the production of the syrup has now been stopped. The company’s website was recently offline. An archived version of the website says the company’s products are sold in India, Russia and former Soviet republics, Southeast Asia, Africa and Latin America.

According to the Uzbek Ministry of Health, the cough syrup is contaminated with the toxic chemical ethylene glycol, which is found in anticoagulants. The World Health Organization (WHO) warned in October that many cough medicines from India contain “unacceptable levels” of ethylene glycol and diethylene glycol.

India is known as the pharmacy of the world and produces many medicines Cost effective, especially for poor countries. Drugs manufactured by Indian pharmaceutical company Maiden Pharmaceuticals have been linked to the deaths of nearly 70 children in The Gambia. The children died of acute kidney failure, AFP news agency reported. After the WHO warning, authorities in India launched an investigation into Maiden Pharmaceuticals. Investigations revealed that the drugs in question met “quality standards,” it was later said. (slo/dpa/AFP)

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