Tainted teething syrup kills kids
Child deaths from poisoned syrup rise to 84.
(Getty Images)
The number of children killed in Nigeria by teething syrup tainted with a poisonous chemical has risen to 84, the health minister has said.

The Minister, Babatunde Osotimehin, said in a statement that "the poison has caused many deaths in children between the ages of 2 months and 7 years old in Nigeria. 111 cases have been reported since November and 84 children are reported dead."

The children had fallen ill after taking "My Pikin" teething syrup contaminated with diethylene glycol, a compound blamed for causing kidney failure.

The first case was discovered in November with symptoms including diarrhoea, vomiting, fever, convulsions and an inability to pass urine.

More than 400 bottles of My Pikin syrup have been retrieved from markets around the country and a number of people involved in distributing it have been arrested. The Lagos-based company which makes the syrup has been closed down.

Tainted, fake and counterfeit drugs have long been a problem in Africa's most populous nation, though the National Agency for Food, Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) has been leading a crackdown.

In 1990, 109 children in Ibadan and the central city of Jos died after taking paracetamol syrup which contained ethylene glycol solvent, a compound related to diethylene glycol and also normally used in engine coolant.

Read Parent24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.


Want to know what your baby looks like and what you can expect at this stage?




Play creatively

Don’t let your little one’s frustration with wanting to ‘get things just right’ stop them from playing creatively.

See more >


Everything from parties to pre-schools in your area.