The Health Ministry has banned the traditional health product, Nan Bao (capsule) as it had found traces of poisonous substance, sildenafil.
In a statement today, Health Ministry Director General Datuk Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah said Malaysians must not purchase and consume the product.
Dr Noor Hisham said the registration of the product had been cancelled by the the Drug Control Authorities in its 331th meeting, following the detection of the poisonous substance, which is banned in the formulation of traditional health products.
"Sildenafil is a type of medicine which is used to treat erectile dysfunction. Medicines containing sildenafil can only be prescribed by doctors or pharmacies with doctors’ prescription.
Dr Noor Hisham said the usage of sildenafil without doctor’s advise could lead to adverse effects such impairment of vision and hearing, serious low blood pressure, and effects to the cardiovascular systems such as stroke and heart attack. Sidenafil and its analogs are not allowed in traditional medicine.
“Using this product which contains sidenafil is very dangerous, especially among those with heart related problems such as angina and those who consume medicines which contain nitrate,” he added.
He also warned sellers and distributors of this product to immediately stop the sale and distribution.
“Selling and distribution of this product is against the Sale of Drugs Act 1952 and the Control of Drugs and Cosmetics Regulations 1984,” he added.
Individuals who are found to committ wrongdoings under these two regulations, will be liable to a penalty of not more than RM25,000 or a jail term of not more than three years, or both, for the first offence, while for the subsequent offences, they will be liable to a penalty of not more than RM50,000 and jail term of not more than five years.
Companies could also be fined up to RM50,000 for the first offence and RM100,000 for subsequent offences.
“Members of th public who are currently using this product are advised to immediately stop consumption, and seek the doctor’s advise if they suffer from any adverse effects,” he added.
Dr Noor Hisham also said the public could check the status of a health product via https//:npra.moh.gov.my or contact the National Pharmaceutical Regulatory Agency at 03-78835400.