KUALA LUMPUR: The Health Ministry has cautioned the public against buying and using 12 cosmetics products which have been found to contain scheduled poison.
The ministry, under the National Pharmaceutical Regulatory Agency said the products from six companies were found to contain tretinoin, chloramphenicol, sulfamethoxazole, trimethoprim, ketoconazole, chlorpheniramine, griseofulvin, metronidazole, hydroquinone and mercury.
The products are 3rd, 5th and 7th Series Yanko Whitening Night Cream (containing tretinoin), Clair De Lune -P.Tuberose Day Cream (containing chloramphenicol, sulfamethoxazole, trimethoprim, ketoconazole), Clair De Lune -S.Involucrata Night Cream (containing chlorpheniramine, griseofulvin, metronidazole, sulfamethoxazole, trimethoprim), Dnars Nien Cream, Glow Glowing N Glow, Dolly Glow Miracle Treatment Cream (all containing hydroquinone and tretinoin), Glow Glowing T Treatment, VSL Beauty Care Toner A and B (all containing hydroquinone) and Dolly Glow Luminous Night Cream (containing mercury).
Health director-general Datuk Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah said the ministry has cancelled the notification numbers for the products following the detection of the scheduled poison.
“Products containing chloramphenicol, sulfamethoxazole, trimethoprim, griseofulvin, metronidazole, ketoconazole, chlorpheniramine, hydroquinone and tretinoin are classified as drug that requires registration with the Drug Control Authority and can only be used under the advice of healthcare professionals.
“The unsupervised usage of antibiotics (metronidazole, chloramphenicol, sulfamethoxazole, and trimethoprim), antifungal (ketoconazole, griseofulvin) and antihistamine (chlorpheniramine) can cause harmful effects to health.
“The unsupervised usage of hydroquinone can cause skin redness, discomfort, skin discolouration, hypersensitivity, inhibits the pigmentation process (depigmentation) which reduces the skin’s ability to be protected from harmful UV rays and increasing the risk of skin cancer.
“The unsupervised usage of tretinoin can cause redness to the skin, discomfort, stinging, peeling and sensitivity to sunlight.
“Mercury is prohibited in cosmetic products due to its hazardous effects on human health. It is readily absorbed through the skin on topical application and tends to accumulate in the body.
"Exposure to mercury can cause skin rashes, memory loss and muscle weakness while high exposures may result in damage to the brain and kidneys. It is also extremely toxic to unborn children,” said Dr Noor Hisham in a statement Thursday.
He also advised consumers to stop using the products and seek further advice from healthcare professionals if any effects or adverse events are experienced.
He also warned all the sellers and distributors to stop the sales and distribution of the products immediately as selling or distributing these cosmetic products was an offence under the Control of Drugs and Cosmetics Regulations 1984.