February 16, 2000
Alert - Prescription Drugs Found in 5 Herbal Products
Sacramento, CA (SafetyAlerts) - Consumers should
immediately stop using five herbal products because they contain two prescription drugs
not listed as ingredients that are unsafe without monitoring by a physician, California
State Health Director Diana Bontá said today.
The products containing these drugs are Diabetes
Hypoglucose Capsules, Pearl Hypoglycemic Capsules, Tongyi Tang Diabetes Angel Pearl
Hypoglycemic Capsules, Tongyi Tang Diabetes Angel Hypoglycemic Capsules and Zhen Qi
An investigation was launched by the California
Department of Health after a diabetic patient in Northern California suffered from several
episodes of low blood sugar after consuming one of the products, Diabetes Hypoglucose
Capsules. The patient has fully recovered.
These products are available from mail order and
can be purchased by telephone or via the Internet:
- Diabetes Hypoglucose Capsules are
sold by Chinese Angel Health Products Inc., also known as Chinese Herbal Health Products,
2118 Wilshire Blvd, P.O. Box 498, Santa Monica CA 90403. These capsules, which are green
and white, are available in 70-capsule bottles. The label has green and black English
printing with a picture of a plant. The UPC number is 6-923174-911016.
- Pearl Hypoglycemic Capsules,
imported by Sino American Health Product Inc., 2421 W. 205th St., Suite D103, Torrance CA
90501, are sold by the importer and Chinese Angel Health Products Inc. Chinese Angel
Health Products also relabels the product. Capsules, available in 60-capsule bottles, are
blue and white with Chinese characters imprinted on one side of the capsule. The red,
green and black English label is placed over the Chinese manufacturer's label that
contains black and green Chinese characters and a red logo.
- Tongyi Tang Diabetes Angel Pearl
Hypoglycemic Capsules and Tongyi Tang Diabetes Angel Hypoglycemic Capsules are
available in 60-capsule bottles. The capsules are blue and white with Chinese characters
imprinted on one side of the capsule. The label has red, green and black English printing
and Chinese characters. The UPC number is 6-920555-319966.
- The Zhen Qi Capsules are available
in 60-capsule bottles. The capsules are clear. The green label has silver English printing
with a picture of a leaf. The product is manufactured for Sino American Health Products
Inc. of Torrance CA 90501. The UPC number is 7-63052-31148.
These products claim to contain only natural
Chinese herbal ingredients. However, an investigation by the California Department of
Health Services' Food and Drug Branch determined they contain the prescription drugs
glyburide and phenformin, which can be used to treat diabetes.
Consumers should stop using these products and
seek medical advice, especially if they are currently being treated with other
anti-diabetes drugs or if they have symptoms of fatigue, excessive hunger, profuse
sweating or numbness of extremities. Consumers who use these products can receive a
dangerously high amount of glyburide and phenformin.
Consumers should return these products to the
seller or dispose of them safely to prevent exposure to children.
The Food and Drug Branch is working closely with
the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to stop importation of the products into the United
States and remove them from sale.