Supreme Court Lifts Ban on Sale of Painkiller Saridon, 2 Other Drugs

New Delhi: The Supreme Court lifted ban on sale of painkiller Saridon and two other drugs.

The top court ruling comes after the September 13 order by the Ministry of Health that banned the manufacture for sale or distribution of 328 fixed-dose combination (FDC) drugs. The banned medicines included brands like Piramal’s Saridon, Alkem Laboratories’ Taxim AZ and Macleods Pharma’s Panderm Plus cream.

Public health experts and doctors in India and abroad have warned against the increasing use of antibiotic combinations as it may be contributing to antibiotic resistance.

India poses a particular concern as the market share of combination drugs versus single drugs is bigger than anywhere in the world.

An expert panel formed by the Drugs Technical Advisory Board (DTAB), in its report to the Centre, stated that there is no therapeutic justification for the ingredients contained in 328 FDCs and that these FDCs may involve risk to human beings.

DTAB said these combinations may lead to overuse. According to the technical body, there is no need to expose the patients to that many ingredients when one will do the work. The notification stated, “Hence in the larger public interest, it is necessary to prohibit the manufacture, sale or distribution of this FDC…any kind of regulation or restriction to allow for any use in patients is not justifiable.”

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