A Singapore health authority has warned the public not to consume a traditional medicine labeled ‘Air Ikan Haruan’ as it contained an undeclared potent medicinal substance.

In a statement today, the Health Sciences Authority (HSA) said it had detected dexamethasone, which was a potent western medicine, in the traditional medicine.

It said dexamethasone was a prescription drug commonly used to treat inflammatory conditions such as arthritis.

“‘Air Ikan Haruan’, packaged in small bottles, claimed it could “cleanse dirty blood, ease itchy skin, cure internal injury, boost energy, ease dry cough, promote maternal health after childbirth,” HSA said.

The unsupervised and prolonged usage of dexamethasone could cause serious adverse reactions such as irregular heartbeat, increased blood pressure, increased cholesterol, increased blood sugar, menstrual irregularities, muscle and bone damage, seizures and mental and mood disorders, it added.

HSA said the medicine had not been found in local retail outlets but it was concerned that members of the public might purchase the product from overseas and be inadvertently exposed to serious health hazards caused by the adulterated product. –BERNAMA