US FDA alerted US consumers to sibutramine containing diet capsules in early May, and now those same capsules have been found for sale in Israel, according to the Israeli Health Ministry’s Pharmaceutical Crime Unit.

The drug was withdrawn from the US market due to safety reasons in October 2010, and has sent a “large number” of people to hospitals, according to Mickey Ariely of the Israeli Health Ministry’s Pharmaceutical Crime Unit, reports the Jerusalem Post.

The pills, called ” Slim Xtreme Herbal Slimming Capsules,” are advertised as nutritional supplements, however they contain a dangerous ingredient, sibutramine, which is known to dangerously increase blood pressure and pulse rates, and is a significant risk for people with heart problems.

Ariely reported that some of the Israeli victims were hospitalized not only for cardiac conditions, but were also hospitalized in psychiatric wards.

The company, Globe All Wellness, that sold and distributed nationwide via the internet is headquartered in Hollywood, Florida.  It is not known how the products ended up in Israel.

The FDA has warned consumers to avoid the fake pills and destroy any they have purchased.  The FDA warning can be found on the FDA’s Medwatch page.

By S. Imber