I usually reserve misgivings for some of the drug combinations that pour into the Nigerian market. For instance, a cough syrup will be labelled to contain a suppressant such as dextromethorphan, a mucolytic such as bromhexin,and an expectorant such as ammonium chloride. It is like trying to put the drug and cough reflexes into confusion because you cannot be suppressing cough and expect to expectorate at thesame time. I stand to be corrected. Even some ethical drug combinations are very funny. Another instance is Combination of glibenclamide and metformin. We all know that individually one should be taken before food and the other after food which brings to question the best time to take the drug. Recently, I came across another combination that gives me cause to worry whether our pharmaceutical importers actually study these formulations before bringing them in not to mention NAFDAC’s apathy. The enzyme Serratiopeptidase was combined with an NSAID. Now, an NSAID is meant to be taken with food to prevent ulceration while the enzyme is to be taken on an empty stomach for efficacy, otherwise it will just end up acting as a digestive enzyme of the content of the stomach . In essence, the drug combination will only offer the benefit of the NSAID and not the benefit of the two drugs if taken with food as claimed by the manufacturers because it is only when the enzyme gets into the systemic circulation will it be able to exert its antinflammatory effects. For this reason, it is usually enteric coated and administered on empty stomach alone.
Most of our products come from India. So, I was happy when I came across this list of banned drug combinations from the Indian health ministry as they lack any additional benefit. Three hundred drug combinations were banned due to lack of prove of combined efficacy. click here to get the comprehensive list. I am sure some of them are parading our drug shelves. This is a wake up call on NAFDAC.
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  1. Abi O. One good discount deserves another

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