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FDA warns public vs. Bangkok Pills promoted online

Health authorities over the weekend warned the public against online ads selling so-called Bangkok Pills, which claim to help make people slim.

The Food and Drug Administration identified at least one website that it said is offering and promoting the commodity.

As of Friday evening, the site specified by the FDA advisory were still selling Bangkok Pills at prices ranging from P500 to P2,000.

In its advisory, the FDA said the Bangkok Pills were advertised as suppressing appetite and having a diuretic effect to flush out excess water via urination and sweating.

"Bangkok Pills are not registered with the FDA. Thus, the FDA declares that such advertisement, promotion and sale is an outright violation of the provisions of Republic Act No. 3720 as amended by Republic Act No. 9711, prohibiting the manufacture, importation, exportation, sale, offering for sale, distribution, transfer, non-consumer use, promotion, advertisement of any health product which is not registered with the FDA," FDA head Kenneth Hartigan-Go said.

Hartigan-Go also warned such pills contain ephedrine, bisacodyl, furosemide, phentermine and fenfluramine "which are drug substances that may pose dangers to the consumers."

"In combination, these drug substances can cause hallucination, paranoia, insomia, respiratory problems, hypertension, and development of heart valve abnormalities, kidney failure and even death.  Therefore, it is not allowed to be sold or placed in the market because of the unsafe combination of substances contained in the product," he said.

He urged the public to relay information about any establishment found selling Bangkok Pills through email or at telephone numbers 857-1900 local 1051/857-1939. — Joel Locsin /LBG, GMA News