HEALTH

Zymaderm now available at Walgreens

BY Michael Johnsen

BOISE, Idaho Naturopathix on Wednesday announced that its homeopathic remedy Zymaderm for relief of molluscum contagiosum symptoms has expanded distribution through national retailer Walgreens from Amazon.com and independents.

Molluscum contagiosum is a contagious skin infection caused by a virus that is a member of the poxvirus family. Symptoms can include raised, warty lesions, and the infection accounts for approximately 1% of all diagnoses of skin disorders, Naturopathix reported.

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CRN addresses senatorial committee about dietary supplement use by seniors

BY Michael Johnsen

WASHINGTON The Council for Responsible Nutrition last week testified before the Senate Special Committee on Aging concerning the committee’s “Dietary Supplements: What Seniors Need to Know” hearing.

In his remarks, Steve Mister, CRN president and CEO, reassured the more than 150 million Americans who take dietary supplements each year that “the dietary supplement industry is committed to manufacturing and marketing high quality, safe and beneficial products that have a valuable role in a wellness regimen. This industry is likewise committed to ensuring consumers receive truthful, accurate and non-misleading information on dietary supplements.”

Mister noted the supplement industry—through its five trade associations—had developed a variety of voluntary, self-regulatory programs that address issues that potentially tarnish the industry, and pointed specifically to the $1.5 million unrestricted grant provided by CRN to the National Advertising Division of the Council of Better Business Bureaus to monitor dietary supplement ads to help ensure they are truthful and not misleading. 

Mister advised that new legislation introduced last week by Sens. Orrin Hatch , R-Utah, and Tom Harkin, D-Iowa, would provide additional funding and accountability for the Food and Drug Administration in further enforcing the law, and he urged Congress to support that bill.

Mister also referred to consumer research that demonstrates that dietary supplement consumers are more likely than those who don’t take supplements to also engage in other healthy habits such as trying to eat a healthy diet, exercising regularly and visiting their doctors. 

“Dietary supplements help to preserve good health and help reduce the risks of certain chronic diseases,” he said. “Vitamins fill in nutritional gaps, and are especially important when seniors fail to get a nutritious diet or aging itself reduces their bodies’ natural ability to absorb nutrients from conventional food.” 

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GSK Consumer Healthcare to update Alli label

BY Michael Johnsen

PARSIPPANY, N.J. GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare last week announced it will update the Alli product label to alert consumers to certain symptoms that have been associated with rare instances of severe liver injury reported in people taking orlistat, the active ingredient in Alli. This update followed FDA’s completion of its safety review of orlistat and is being implemented in conjunction with Roche, the manufacturer of the prescription dose of orlistat (Xenical). The agency stated that a cause-and-effect relationship has not been established.

The updated Alli label will advise consumers to: “Stop use and ask a doctor if you develop itching, yellow eyes or skin, dark urine or loss of appetite. There have been rare reports of liver injury in people taking orlistat.”

“GSK is committed to ensuring that consumers and physicians understand the safety profile of orlistat and alli,” stated Howard March, chief medical officer for GSK Consumer Healthcare. “Although reports of serious liver injury in people taking orlistat are rare, GSK takes all adverse events reports seriously.”

Since Alli was made available over-the-counter in 2007, more than 10 million people worldwide have used the product. With more than 100 clinical studies involving 30,000 patients, orlistat is the most extensively studied weight loss drug in the world and continues to be a safe and effective product when used as directed to help people lose weight. More than 40 million people have used orlistat since it first became available in 1998.

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