When African children died, doctors fought to ban poisonous Indian syrup


Indian authorities shut down the factory that produced the drug in October. Government regulators had their manufacturer Maiden Pharmaceuticals Ltd It has been violated Rules “In production and testing activities.” Maiden managing director Naresh Kumar Goyal told Reuters he had done nothing wrong and did not respond to further inquiries. He wanted to reopen the plant.

Goyal has been around ever since. He was sentenced. Manufacturing defects that occurred ten years ago. Court documents do not indicate how they pleaded.

In December, India’s health regulator said it had conducted its own tests and found no toxins in the syrup. Government officials accused the World Health Organization of failing to establish a link to Gambian deaths and accused the agency of undermining the $41 billion pharmaceutical industry, according to a letter the watchdog sent to the health agency, Reuters reviewed.

“The World Health Organization is clear that there is no direct link between the use of cough syrup in India and the deaths of children in The Gambia,” India’s health ministry told Reuters in a statement.

The World Health Organization says that establishing this relationship is not the main issue.

“It is not a case of causality,” said WHO spokeswoman Margaret Harris. The poisons in Maiden Syrup “should never be ingested by humans.”

Similar poisoning – cough syrup made in Indonesia and produced by A Different Company in India – appeared later, in Indonesia and Uzbekistan. There is a police in those countries caught up And Accused Chemical traders, importers and regulators selling or testing the products without proper marketing as suitable for pharmaceutical use.

In January, the World Health Organization called The alarm Globally over cough syrup safety.

“Cyanide in a Bottle.”

In the year In 1937, DEG killed 107 people using antibiotics. Since then, the toxins have caused at least 16 mass poisonings around the world.

DEG is used in car brake fluid and radiators. Cats and dogs who are attracted to the delicacy often die after licking the ground, says toxicologist Leo Shepp of New Zealand consultancy ToxicsInform, which published a peer-reviewed paper on DEG poisoning.

“It’s like putting cyanide in a bottle of paracetamol,” Schepp said.

After the death of the US, US lawmakers mandated Food and Drug Administration inspections to ensure safety before they went on sale. Other developed countries have similarly strong checks.

Gambia is one of the smallest and poorest countries in Africa. It has no pharmaceutical industry, no inspection system for imported drugs, and more than two dozen registered pharmacists for 2.5 million people.

The first case at Muoneke Hospital was a two-year-old boy on July 7. Five more children were admitted within a week.

The hospital had enough dialysis catheters for three patients, Deputy Chief Medical Officer Abubakar Jagne said. Further exploration drove to neighboring Senegal, where they eventually ordered nine Nigerians.

The Ministry of Health reported the children’s issue to the World Health Organization and the agency provided assistance. Doctors said the E. coli bacteria found in the flood water had the potential to cause death, but they had never seen an E. coli infection that was fatal.

The patient’s history shows that the children took syrup for mild pain days before hospitalization. Soon they started vomiting and had diarrhoea. Then they stopped urinating. Drowsiness sets in, they lose consciousness. Their pupils are dilated and adjusted. Blood tests showed poor kidney function.

However, Gambian government officials told Reuters they wanted more proof as the doctors’ evidence of poisoning mounted. For two months, the government did not mention potentially dangerous drugs in public statements.

“It was psychological torture for us,” said Muoneke. If the toxic substance tests are done in late or early July. August said a sales ban could have saved dozens of children.

Health Minister Ahmadou Lamin Samateh did not respond to this point, but told Reuters in November that he acted quickly when he learned that drugs were a possible cause.

“We’re not seeing issues anymore, so has the government and the team done well? I think we’ve done very well,” he said. The Ministry’s Director of Health Services, Mustafa Bitaye, said he would not make any comments before the government submits a report on the matter.


Binta Sesay posted a photo of her three sons Ali, Mustafa and Mohammed on her phone shortly after they were born.

Last July, her seven-month-old son caught the flu. She said Sisay bought them medicine. After three days he had diarrhea and vomited. They stop passing urine. On July 26, all three were admitted to a hospital south of Banjul.

Ali said his mouth and nose began to bleed. “He couldn’t do anything. His body seemed frozen.

Ali died on July 29. Two days later, Mustafa died.


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