Fake toothpaste contaminated with a potentially dangerous toxic chemical has been sold in the UK, the British medicines regulator has said.
Diethylene Glycol has been added to fake tubes of Sensodyne, which have both Arabic and English writing on them.
The manufacturer of the legitimate product, GlaxoSmithKline, has released a statement saying the imitation toothpaste has high levels of Diethylene Glycol, which could be toxic to young children and anyone with impaired liver or kidney function.
GlaxoSmithKline confirmed the fakes were illegal copies and had no connection with the company. Legitimate Sensodyne, labelled only in English and sourced from authorised suppliers, is not defective and the public can continue to purchase and use these products with confidence.
The company also said it did not use DEG in any of its toothpastes. It said: ‘These fake products are illegal and have no connection with GlaxoSmithKline. GSK takes any reports of counterfeit very seriously. The company has contacted its legitimate retail supply chain to ensure no counterfeit product exists.’
Any purchasers of the fake tubes have been advised to dispose of them immediately. The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) confirmed that the imitation packs batch have been sold at markets and car boot sales but not in shops. It has also alerted hospitals, wholesalers and pharmacies to check whether they have stocked any of the affected toothpaste.