Recall of Johnson & Johnson Benylin Pediatric Cough Syrup Across Africa

How Are Countries Responding to the Toxicity Concerns in Children’s Medicine?

Recall of Johnson & Johnson Benylin Pediatric Cough Syrup Across Africa

Authorities in Tanzania, Rwanda, and Zimbabwe have initiated a recall of a specific batch of Benylin Pediatric cough syrup, following reports of elevated toxicity levels. This action aligns with measures already taken by Nigeria, Kenya, and South Africa, reinforcing a concerted regional response to a potential health risk.

Prompt Action on Test Results

The recall was triggered by findings from Nigeria’s food and drug regulator, which detected harmful levels of toxicity in the syrup. The Tanzania Medicines and Medical Devices Authority (TMDA) responded swiftly, commencing the recall on April 12, immediately after receiving the distressing test results from Nigeria.

On the same day, the Rwanda Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) issued “the present recall for precautionary measures.”

Richard Rukwata, the director-general of the Medicines Control Authority of Zimbabwe (MCAZ), also confirmed on Monday that their agency is recalling the affected product to safeguard public health.

Concerns Over Toxic Ingredients

The alarming test outcomes revealed by the Nigerian regulator indicated the presence of diethylene glycol at levels high enough to cause significant health risks. The chemical is notably toxic and has been linked to severe health issues including:

  • Abdominal pain
  • Inability to pass urine
  • Acute kidney injury, potentially leading to fatal outcomes

Product Details and Manufacture

The recalled batch of Benylin Pediatric was manufactured in South Africa by Johnson & Johnson in May 2021. It is marked with an expiration date of April 2024. This timeline and the geographical scope of the recall highlight the urgency and severity of the response required to prevent further health hazards. The collaborative efforts of the regional drug regulatory authorities aim to ensure the safety and well-being of the youngest and most vulnerable members of their populations.

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Written by Wendy


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