UAE Ministry of Health Recalls Some Anti-Hypertensive Medications Containing Valsartan

These Heart Disease Medication Made in China Have Been Recalled for Potentially Causing Cancer- WORLD OF BUZZ

On an online forum of hypertension patients, there were hundreds of questions asking whether it was safe to take drugs for high blood pressure.

Some medicines containing valsartan used for the treatment of high blood pressure and heart conditions are being recalled across Europe to be reviewed by the European Medicines Agency (EMA) to determine the extent of ingredient impurity. In connection with this, Swiss multinational pharmaceutical company Novartis informed the Ministry that their products containing Valsartan-Diovan, Co-Diovan Entresto and Exforge-are not impacted because these products do not contain the active ingredient from an external supplier, where the active ingredient was manufactured in a Novartis site in Ireland and Switzerland.

Additionally, precautionary measures will be taken by the EMA, which will review other valsartan medicines to ensure they have not also been affected.

Health Canada said Chinese company Zhejiang Huahai Pharmaceuticals supplied the valsartan to several companies that used it to make drugs.

The recall was first issued on July 9th by the federal agency.

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"Patients should not stop taking their medicine if it contains valsartan unless they've been specifically instructed to do so by their prescriber or pharmacist", Nakhla said. Of 484,682 kilograms of Valsartan imported over the last three years, only 13,770 kilograms, or 2.8 percent contain ingredients from China.

As it is now off-patent, it is used as ingredient in many other generic medicines. It initiated on-site investigations of 82 companies to check whether the drugs contain NDMA.

On Saturday, the Health Insurance Review & Assessment Service revised its Drug Utilization Review, a computerized pharmaceutical review system that oversees prescriptions, to display an on-screen warning when doctors try to prescribe a banned drug on their computers.

Health Canada says patients taking the drug should check with their pharmacists to learn if their medicine is being recalled.

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