Almost all paracetamol sold in Nigeria underdosed – WHO reveals

Almost all paracetamol sold in Nigeria underdosed – Who Reveals

Nearly all of the paracetamol tablets sold in Nigeria are possibly underdosed, falling short of the requirements specified by the British Pharmacopoeia and World Health Organisation (WHO), according to a recent investigation.

Samples from five different paracetamol brands, each claiming to contain 500mg, were tested and analyzed using the spectrophotometric method, on the 2023 study titled ‘Comparative Analysis of Five Different Brands of Paracetamol Sold in Nigeria with British Pharmacopoeia Standards’.

The concentrations, according to the investigation, ranges from 185mg to 358mg, which was much lower than the suggested 500mg limit.

The study’s researchers voiced concern about the possibility of treatment failure due to underdosed paracetamol tablets.

They emphasized that possibly as a result of the perception that the practice is safe, the topic had not received sufficient attention, saying, “Considering the current demands for cost-effective therapy, a prescribing and underdosing habit that could lead to treatment failure is of potential concern.”

The researchers, according to the study, believed that the development can lead to poor patient outcomes, polypharmacy, and a large expense to the healthcare system, as paracetamol, which is widely used in Nigeria for its analgesic qualities, is a basic pain reliever.

The investigation noted that the study’s findings raise questions about the drug’s efficacy, which could be attributed to insufficient amounts of the active ingredient in the tested tablets.

Published in the journal Communication in Physical Sciences, the study emphasizes the importance of increased awareness and regulatory scrutiny to ensure the quality and efficacy of pharmaceuticals available to the public.

The health implications of underdosed paracetamol tablets extend beyond individual patients, according to the study.

The study noted that the development is affecting overall healthcare outcomes and imposing additional costs on the healthcare system.

 

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