Safety alert as two heartburn medicines withdrawn from sale in UAE


The Ministry of Health and Prevention withdrew all batches of two medicines that relieve heartburn and acid reflux.

The government registration of both products – Proton 40mg and Proton 20mg EC tablets – were suspended and both products recalled, the ministry said.

The Department of Health Abu Dhabi said the decision was taken after Gulf Health Council recalled all lots “due to their non-bio equivalence to the reference product”.

The decision was taken after Saudi Food and Drug Authority issued an alert last month about withdrawing the tablets used to treat heartburn manufactured by Saudi Pharmaceutical Industries and Medical Appliances Corporation, or Spimaco.

Health authorities asked all pharmacies in the Emirates to cease sale of the two drugs and return leftover supplies to the manufacturer.

Doctors were asked to monitor patients who had already taken the tablets and to report any side effects.

Officials also asked patients to call their doctors for different medicine.

The tablets are usually prescribed for acid reflux and heartburn.

Symptoms can last from a few minutes to hours and the condition is usually treated with over-the-counter medication.

Heartburn is a burning feeling experienced in the chest that can travel through the neck and throat.

Triggers include stress, pregnancy and eating too close to bedtime.

Occasional heartburn is common but people with frequent and severe heartburn are advised to see a doctor.

Heartburn medicine can reduce the production of stomach acid, relieve indigestion and soothe an upset stomach .

Updated: April 4, 2021 08:17 PM