The Health Sciences Authority (HSA) of Singapore warned consumers on Monday (Jan 22) against the use of two health tonic products after reports of one consumer being admitted to the intensive care unit (ICU) and another suffered facial chemical burns. HSA tests found that the tonics contained dexamethasone, a steroid.
The products are Ure Tonic Herbal Traditional from a practitioner in Malaysia, and "unlabelled brown bottles of facial solution" also known as RDL Hydroquinone Tretinoin Babyface Solution 3 from the Anita iBrow beauty parlour at Dhoby Xchange, Singapore.
HSA said in its statement that a consumer of the tonic - a woman in her 50s - had been taking it daily for more than a year to "strengthen her body". "She developed Cushing's syndrome, a condition caused by prolonged consumption of steroids," it said.
The woman suffered from persistent low blood pressure and the life-threatening sepsis condition where tissue and organs inside the abdomen are affected. Another woman, in her 20s, suffered from "superficial chemical burns and skin peeling" on her face after applying the facial solution from Anita iBrow every day for over three days, said HSA. She had it as part of her makeup at a parlor.
"Avoid buying or using unlabelled health products and be wary of products that promise quick and miraculous results. Such products may contain harmful ingredients which can cause serious health effects," advised HSA.
HSA has warned sellers and suppliers saying, "The supply of 'URE (有利) TONIC HERBAL TRADITIONAL (传统青草营养素)' and 'RDL HYDROQUINONE TRETINOIN Babyface Solution 3' must be stopped immediately."
Anyone who supplies illegal health products is liable to prosecution and if convicted, may be imprisoned for up to 3 years and or fined up to S$100,000, it warned.
The authority has also appealed the public who have any information on the sale and supply of these illegal products to contact HSA's Enforcement Branch at Tel: 6866-3485 during office hours (Monday to Friday) or email: email@example.com.