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Complementary Medicines regulations amendment

Posted 16 September 2014

An amendment to the Complementary Medicines regulations has been published.

DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH No. R. 716   15 September 2014

MEDICINES AND RELATED SUBSTANCES ACT, 1965 (ACT NO. 101 OF 1965)

GENERAL REGULATIONS MADE IN TERMS OF THE MEDICINES AND RELATED SUBSTANCES ACT, 1965 (ACT NO. 101 OF 1965): AMENDMENT

The Minister of Health intends, in terms of section 35 of the Medicines and Related Substances Act, 1965 (Act No. 101 of 1965), and in consultation with the Medicines Control Council, to make the regulations in the Schedule.

Interested persons are invited to submit any substantiated comments in writing on the proposed amendments to the Director-General: Health, Private Bag X828, Pretoria, 0001 (for attention of the Acting Director: Complimentary Medicines) within three months from date of publication of this notice.

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Hazards of Hindsight — Monitoring the Safety of Nutritional Supplements

Posted 16 September 2014

“Epidemiologists at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently confirmed what an astute liver-transplant surgeon in Honolulu already suspected: OxyElite Pro, a popular over-the-counter supplement, was responsible for a cluster of cases of severe hepatitis and liver failure.1 Although patients began to develop severe hepatitis in May 2013, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), whose job it is to remove dangerous supplements from store shelves, did not learn of the cases until mid-September, 4 months later. By February 2014, the CDC had linked 97 cases, resulting in 47 hospitalizations, three liver transplantations, and one death, to OxyElite Pro. This dietary supplement was recalled, but nothing has been done to prevent another supplement from causing organ failure or death. Nor have any changes been made to improve the FDA’s ability to detect dangerous supplements.”

Pieter A. Cohen, M.D.  Hazards of Hindsight — Monitoring the Safety of Nutritional Supplements. N Engl J Med 2014; 370:1277-1280April 3, 2014

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Homemark Aragan Secret Nail Treatment – still lying

Posted 08 September 2014

A consumer complaint was laid against Homemark’s packaging of its “Aragan Secret Nail Treatment”.  The complainant submitted, in essence, that the list of ingredients on the label is misleading as the actual product only contains peroxide. The complainant further added that the product in question is not manufactured in Israel contrary to what the packaging claims.

The ASA found that Homemark had not been able to supply proof to counter the complaint.

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Tri-Vortex, small fry, big scam

Posted 28 August 2014

Readers may remember our postings of the Tri-Vortex “technology”:

Tri-Vortex™ claims that by treating water with a hi-end computer, professional audio software & hardware, amplifiers and a set of domed cylindrical chambers, that they can change the molecular structure of water and give it additional properties, resulting in a product that among other, can result in natural pain relief – with no chemicals.

http://www.camcheck.co.za/tri-vortex-technology/
http://www.camcheck.co.za/tri-vortex-scam-now-in-india/

Cover2-Portrait This has resulted in a protracted debate with the “inventor”,  Brian David Anderson, a self-styled “scientist”.

Mr Anderson’s theories (beliefs) do not fit in with any known scientific principle or theory. Mr Anderson argues “[A]re you arrogant enough to think that current academia has discovered and knows all the ‘motions’ of our dimension?” Seems like Mr Anderson made a major slip, for he did not realise that he was therefore ‘arrogantly’ claiming to have discovered one or more of the ‘motions’ of our dimension! This is no small feat. Problem, no other scientists believes or supports him.

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Anti-Doping Agency warns athletes about dietary supplements

Posted 11 August 2014

The United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) maintains a Web site that challenges myths about dietary supplements and discourages their use. Among other things, the site warns:

  • Navigating the supplement marketplace and supplement issues is difficult. No one person or organization can provide all the answers.
  • Many people have hastily jumped to the conclusion that supplements are safe, effective, and a necessary part of being an elite athlete.
  • It is very unlikely that healthy people will be unable to get the nutrients they need from diet alone. There is simply no substitution for eating a proper diet.
  • The majority of supplements have not been proven to improve performance.
  • Certain dietary supplements contain exorbitant amounts of nutrients that are unnecessary, unusable by the body, or even potentially harmful.
  • The best option may be to not take dietary supplements.

The site also contains the Supplement 411 High Risk List of products that have been found to contain substances that are banned in high-level athletic competition. The list is accessible free of charge but requires viewers to register.

Antagolin – Still no robust evidence II

Posted 07 August 2014

The ASA has previously ruled against the claims for Antagolin. The company submitted new evidence in support of their claims. The ASA requested the two previous complainants to comment on the submission. Based on the ASA’s assessment of the complaint, and the comments, they ruled against the claims for Antagolin.

Importantly, Dr Conrad Smith and pharmacist, Mariaan du Plessis, may have opened themselves to being struck of the professional register for conducting a study without ethical approval or informed consent.

Ruling 2

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Antagolin – Still no robust evidence I

Posted 07 August 2014

The ASA has previously ruled against the claims for Antagolin. The company submitted new evidence in support of their claims. The ASA requested the two previous complainants to comment on the submission. Based on the ASA’s assessment of the complaint, and the comments, they ruled against the claims for Antagolin.

Importantly, Dr Conrad Smith and pharmacist, Mariaan du Plessis, may have opened themselves to being struck of the professional register for conducting a study without ethical approval or informed consent.

Ruling 1

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Are omega-3s just snake oil?

Posted 06 August 2014

This interesting article written by Elizabeth Preston raises a few interesting points, including how evidence from old studies may have been misinterpreted or miscommunicated, and these effects on claims and ongoing studies.

In the 1970s, a pair of Danish researchers ventured north of the Arctic Circle and into medical lore. Studying a scattered Inuit population, they concluded that eating plenty of fish and other marine animals protected this group from heart disease. The researchers would eventually suggest that everyone else’s hearts and arteries might also benefit from the “Eskimo diet,” promoting a health food trend that continues to this day. The only trouble is, the two Danes never proved that the Inuit had low rates of heart disease. They never tested it at all.

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Opinion: Health fact and fiction

Posted 06 August 2014

Some practical advice from a health journalist.

Recently one doctor labelled sports scientist Tim Noakes’ low carbohydrate “banting” diet as “criminal,” leaving many asking whether they stick to the popular diet. Health-e News’ Wilma Stassen says that when in doubt, look to the science.

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Posted 04 August 2014

MEDIA RELEASE: AHPCSA RESPONSE ON PROPOSED REGULATION/SCHEDULING OF COMPLEMENTARY MEDICINES

The Allied Health Professions Council of South Africa (AHPCSA) is a statutory health body established in terms of the Allied Health Professions Act, 63 of 1982 (the Act) in order to control all allied health professions, which includes Ayurveda, Chinese Medicine and Acupuncture, Chiropractic, Homeopathy, Naturopathy, Osteopathy, Phytotherapy, Therapeutic Aromatherapy, Therapeutic Massage Therapy, Therapeutic Reflexology and Unani-Tibb. You will find copies of all relevant legislation on our website www.ahpcsa.co.za .

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