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Cancer-causing high blood pressure medicines back to sell

Cancer-causing high blood pressure medicines back to sell

Posted May. 06, 2019 08:55,   

Updated May. 06, 2019 08:55


Since the sale of high blood pressure medications containing valsartan was suspended last year for testing positive on N-nitrosodiethyl amine, one of cancer-causing substances, some have been back on sale. The products have turned out to be free of NDMA since another valsartan supplier joined the manufacturing process.

The Ministry of Food and Drug Safety announced on Sunday that bans on the fabrication and sale of 106 out of 175 high blood pressure medications had been lifted since May 2. The products in question are to be prescribed by primary care providers and subject to health insurance coverage.

NDMA is classified as a probably carcinogenic to humans by the WHO International Agency of Research on Cancer. The maximum daily dose of valsartan, or 0.32 gram, is not supposed to contain NDMA higher than 0.3ppm. Cancer can possibly arise for every 0.5 out of 100,000 persons according to the Ministry of Food and Drug Safety’s last year research on the dose period and dosage among domestic patients. It is a lower level than international pharmaceutical product safety standards of every 1 out of 100,000 people.

Regarding 69 products, the sale of which is still suspended, their manufacturers have not requested an additional safety verification. The products back on sale are available on the website of the Ministry of Food and Drug Safety .

Sung-Min Park min@donga.com