FDA Warns Consumers Not to Use Dr. King's Homeopathic Products

On Wednesday, the Food and Drug Administration issued a warning to consumers not to use Dr. King's homeopathic and other drug products. This comes after King Bio Inc., the Asheville, North Carolina company that makes Dr. King's, expanded a voluntary recall to include all aqueous, or water-based drug products marketed for human or animal consumption. The FDA warned that Dr. King's products "may pose a safety risk to people (especially infants, children, pregnant women, and those with compromised immune systems), as well as pets due to high levels of microbial contamination identified at the manufacturing site." The FDA urged "that consumers stop using and dispose of these products immediately."

This warning comes amidst increased scrutiny of the homeopathic industry by the FDA. FDA Commissioner Scot Gottlieb, M.D., noted "In recent years, we've seen a large uptick of products labeled as homeopathic that are being marketed for a wide array of diseases and conditions, from the common cold to cancer. In addition to our concerns with contamination, some homeopathic products may not deliver any benefit and have the potential to cause harm."

Dr. Gottlieb's comments about the claims made by marketers of homeopathic remedies are well-illustrated by the names of the products included in the recall: Dr. King's Children's Cough Relief, Dr. King's Chicken Pox Symptom Relief, Dr. King's Children's Ear Relief Formula, Dr. King's Children's Appetite Enhancer, Dr. King's Attention and Learning Enhancement for Kids, Dr. King's Cold Sore treatment, and Dr. King's Wart Freeze.

Homeopathy is a pseudo-scientific system of "alternative medicine" that was created in the late 18th century. It is based on the unfounded belief in a doctrine of "like cures like," or that a substance that causes an illness can cure the same illness, and the belief that dilution of the substance somehow increases its potency and curative properties. Most homeopathic remedies are so heavily diluted that it mathematically uncertain that they contain even a molecule of the claimed active ingredient. Scientific studies have repeatedly shown homeopathic remedies to be no more effective than placebo.

Yet homeopathic remedies are regulated and tacitly endorsed under the Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act of 1938. This is because one of the Act's sponsors, Sen. Royal Copeland, was himself a homeopathic physician.

Despite the overwhelming scientific evidence against their efficacy, homeopathic remedies continue to line the shelves of mainstream pharmacies to this day. Fortunately, the only harm suffered by many consumers is the payment of their hard-earned money for a spurious, snake-oil cure. Unfortunately, some people suffer far worse, including documented cases of deaths, including of children, who forgo scientific medicine to take homeopathic drugs to treat serious illnesses.

If you or someone you know has been harmed by using a dangerous product, contact an attorney at Abraham, Watkins, Nichols, Sorrels, Agosto & Aziz by calling 713-222-7211 or 1-800-870-9584.

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