HSA flags two products which may pose serious health risks

Candy B+ Coffee Extra Power, one of two products flagged by HSA as health risks. (PHOTO: Health Sciences Authority)

SINGAPORE — The Health Science Authority (HSA) is alerting the public to two products – Lung Tan Tsao and Candy B+ Coffee Extra Power – that may pose serious health risks if consumed.

It said in a media release on Wednesday (27 May) that the two products were found to contain potent medicinal ingredients including a steroid, an antihistamine and high levels of an erectile dysfunction medicine.

Both products have not been detected to be sold in Singapore. If they surface on local e-commerce platforms or are found in physical premises, HSA will take immediate action such as working with the website administrators to take down postings of these products online promptly.

Weight gain, swelling of face

A woman in her 40s experienced weight gain and swelling of the face after taking Lung Tan Tsao, which was labelled for relief of various conditions including eczema, allergies and pain. It was also falsely labelled to contain a variety of natural herbs.

The woman had obtained the product from her friend, who purchased it in Malaysia. Her doctor became suspicious of the product as it cleared the woman’s eczema as rapidly as a prescription medicine would do.

Lung Tan Tsao, flagged by HSA as potential health risk. (PHOTO: Health Sciences Authority)

HSA tested the product and detected chlorpheniramine (an antihistamine) and dexamethasone (a steroid). These potent medicinal ingredients can cause serious adverse effects when used without medical supervision. such as increased blood glucose levels (which may lead to diabetes) and Cushing’s syndrome (a round face or “moon face” appearance and upper body obesity with thin limbs).

Increased risk of stroke and heart attack

Meanwhile, Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) officers detected 15 boxes of Candy B+ Coffee Extra Power in a parcel and referred the case to HSA for further investigation.

The product was labelled as “superfood” and “fountain of youth”, and claimed to contain known herbal ingredients such as “Tongkat Ali” extract, sky fruit extract and maca powder. It also carried quality certification logos on the product.

However, HSA tested the product to contain over 50 times the usual daily dose of tadalafil, an erectile dysfunction medicine. When used without medical supervision, tadalafil can increase risk of stroke and heart attack.

HSA had previously alerted the public in September 2017 to a similar product named Candy B+ Complex, which was also tested to contain tadalafil. Both Candy B+ Coffee Extra Power and Candy B+ Complex were labelled to be manufactured by a same manufacturer, California Pure.

Consult doctor if taken products

Consumers are advised to:

  • See a doctor as soon as possible if they have taken Lung Tan Tsao, as it contains a potent steroid. Discontinuation of steroids without proper medical supervision can cause serious withdrawal symptoms such as fatigue, confusion and low blood pressure.

  • Stop taking Candy B+ Coffee Extra Power immediately and consult a doctor if they feel unwell or are concerned about their health.

  • Be wary of health products that carry exaggerated claims or deliver unexpectedly quick and miraculous results. Be cautious even if the product appears well-packaged or have logos of international standards printed on them.

  • Avoid purchasing health products from unfamiliar sources, and exercise caution when buying such products online or from well-meaning friends.

All sellers and suppliers must stop selling Lung Tan Tsao and Candy B+ Coffee Extra Power immediately. It is illegal to sell and supply such products which contain potent medicinal ingredients. Sellers and suppliers are liable to prosecution and if convicted, may be imprisoned for up to two years and/or fined up to $10,000.

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