Prozac found in weight loss pills imported to Serbia
Tests have confirmed that a brand of weight loss pills imported and sold in Serbia contained the antidepressant drug fluoxetine (trade name "Prozac").
The importer of the Slim Line "herbal" pills has reacted by saying that "the contentious batch" has been recalled from the market, the Belgrade daily Vecernje Novosti is reporting.
The tests that confirmed the presence of the drug in what the newspaper said was "a popular weight loss product in Serbia and around the world" have been carried out by the City Public Health Institution in Belgrade.
In late August, after the initial analysis done at the Faculty of Chemistry in Belgrade, the information about the presence of the antidepressant in the pills first surfaced on Twitter.
The importer, Slim Line Club, was forwarded the results on September 6, and moved to "immediately remove the product from the market." In a letter sent to the daily, the company said that the manufacturer's documentation "clearly shows the pills should not contain fluoxetine."
Slim Line Club Director Dragan Borisic also stated that the batch was recalled "immediately" and has not been available in Serbia "for almost a month."
"After the last import, which passed regular controls, it was later determined that the batch contained the substance fluoxetine. We stress that this is a product registered and entered into the database of the Serbian Ministry of Health, and that quality assurance has existed for all previous imports. We are also in possession of the manufacturer's confirmation that the product does not contain the above mentioned substance," he said.
The company added that they were "prepared to submit all documentation about the pills to the authorities for review."
Vecernje Novosti also writes that the pills were only available online and at the distributor's premises. Two days ago, however, "all information" about the pills, previously available on the website, was removed.